The NBA Finals return Thursday night for game two between the Milwaukee Bucks and Phoenix Suns. Phoenix leads the series 1-0 after a commanding 118-105 win in game one.
The Suns (-5) are favorites to win tonight according to Betonline.ag.
Moneyline: Bucks +170/Suns -195
Suns forward/center Dario Saric was diagnosed with a torn ACL after Tuesday’s game 1 and is out indefinitely. He is the only player listed on the Phoenix injury report.
Despite a clean injury report from the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo is still dealing with a knee injury heading into game 2.
Predicted Starting Lineups
PG: Chris Paul
SG: Devin Booker
SF: Mikal Bridges
PF: Jae Crowder
C: Deandre Ayton
PG: Jrue Holiday
F: Khris Middleton
F: Giannis Antetokounmpo
F: P.J. Tucker
C: Brook Lopez
Phoenix got a combined 81 points in game 1 from Paul, Booker, and Ayton, with Ayton bringing down 19 rebounds as well. They’ll assumably look to get Jae Crowder more involved in game 2, who shot 0-8 from the field and 0-5 from behind the arc on Tuesday.
Despite nursing a knee injury, Giannis Antetokounmpo was able to pour in 20 points and grab 17 rebounds in game 1. They’ll need more from him offensively if they want to even the series. Khris Middleton was the bread winner on Tuesday, scoring 29 points on 12-26 shooting for the Bucks.
Both teams shot about the same percentage from the field (Bucks: 45.5%, Suns 46.6%) on Tuesday, but Milwaukee outshot Phoenix from three, 44.4% compared to 32.4%. The Bucks also out-rebounded the Suns 47-43.
The difference maker in game one was free throws. Milwaukee shot just 56.3% from the stripe, while the Suns shot 96.2%. If the Bucks want to stay in this series, they have to fix their free throw shooting (they’re free you know).
Summary & Prediction
Milwaukee stuck around early in game 1 until Chris Paul took over and pulled the Suns away late. The Bucks will want to steal a game in Phoenix before heading home to Fiserv Forum for game 3 on Sunday night.
Prediction: Phoenix stays hot in the valley and takes a commanding 2-0 series lead over Milwaukee. Despite losing Saric for the series, the Suns still have the depth they need match an ailing Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Score: Suns 114 – Bucks 101
Side: Suns -5
Total: UNDER 220.5