- The Milwaukee Bucks are 3.5-point home favorites over the Brooklyn Nets in Game 3 of their 2nd Round series on Thursday (June 10th, 7:30 pm ET)
- Brooklyn has won the first two matchups, covering easily both times, while both contests have gone under the total
- See below for analysis, odds, injury news and a betting prediction
The Milwaukee Bucks are on the ropes. Giannis Antetokounmpo and company trail the Brooklyn Nets 2-0 in their Eastern Conference Semifinal series, and will look to avoid falling even further behind when the two teams meet again in Game 3.
The pivotal contest goes down Thursday (June 10th), with tip-off at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee set for 7:30 pm ET.
Nets vs Bucks Odds – Game 3
|Team||Spread||Moneyline at FanDuel||Total|
|Brooklyn Nets||+3.5 (-110)||+138||O 234.0 (-110)|
|Milwaukee Bucks||-3.5 (-110)||-164||U 234.0 (-110)|
Odds as of June 9th.
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The Bucks opened up as a 3.5-point favorite, in a game that features a total of 234. Milwaukee has been unable to take advantage of a Brooklyn team that’s been without James Harden for nearly the entire series, and the Nets’ star will once again be on the sidelines in Game 3.
Harden Out Again
Harden played just 43 seconds in Game 1 before exiting with right hamstring tightness, and there’s no timetable for his return. He previously missed 18 regular season games with a right hamstring strain, and two additional contests with the same injury that is currently plaguing him.
Jeff Green and James Harden have been ruled out for Game 3 on Thursday against Milwaukee, Steve Nash says. Nash said both continue to show progress.
Green will play "sooner rather than later", per Nash.
— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) June 9, 2021
Brooklyn forward Jeff Green also remains out due to plantar fasciitis, although he could return for Game 4.
Milwaukee meanwhile, will have all of its top rotational players in the lineup on Thursday, with the exception of Donte DiVincenzo, who’s out for the year with an ankle injury.
Nets vs Bucks Projected Starting Lineups
|Kyrie Irving||PG||Jrue Holiday|
|Bruce Brown||SG||Khris Middleton|
|Joe Harris||SF||P.J. Tucker|
|Kevin Durant||PF||Giannis Antetokounmpo|
|Blake Griffin||C||Brook Lopez|
Despite the absence of Harden, the Nets have won each of the first two games in convincing fashion. They took Game 1 by 8 points, and last time out embarrassed the Bucks.
Milwaukee Manhandled In Game 2
Brooklyn built a 49 point lead on Monday, before cruising to a 125-86 victory. Kevin Durant led the way with 32 points in just three quarters, while Kyrie Irving splashed 22, and Bruce Brown added 13 filling in for Harden.
BIG night in the Borough 💪 pic.twitter.com/mmi1KE8fmL
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) June 8, 2021
The win was the most lopsided in Brooklyn’s postseason history, while the Bucks were held to 34 points below their season average. Milwaukee shot just 44% from the field and were once again dreadful from beyond the arc. They knocked down just 8-of-27 three-point attempts, and are shooting 24.5% from three this series.
It's a best of seven. pic.twitter.com/OeEVbwPuGd
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) June 8, 2021
Giannis led the way with 18, but took only 15 shots and was 2-of-7 from the charity stripe. Khris Middleton added 17 points, but has been a big disappointment through two games. The Bucks number two scoring option is shooting just 30% from the field, and 23% from three-point range.
The good news for Milwaukee is that they’re now back at home, where they had a ton of success this year. Coach’s Bud’s squad is 28-10 on their home floor, and swept Brooklyn in a two-game set there last month.
Value On the Total
Games 1 and 2 featured totals of 239.5 and 238.5 respectively, however both contests came up well short. Oddsmakers have made a big adjustment by lowering the Game 3 total to 234, which offers a bit of value.
When these two teams met last month in Milwaukee, the total for both games was 243. The Bucks averaged 120.8 points at home this season, and the over hit in their home outings at a 61% clip. Yes, their first two games versus the Nets have been a disaster offensively, but they’ll have an extra day to prepare, and we should expect a more efficient effort with their backs against the wall.
Brooklyn meanwhile, saw 22 of its 38 regular season road games soar over the total, and both of their 1st Round road tilts versus Boston. They allowed an average of 125.5 points to the Celtics in Boston, a team that was worse in virtually every key offensive category than Milwaukee.
Pick: Over 234 (-110)
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