Giannis Antetokounmpo Player Prop Pick for Celtics vs Bucks (Thursday, Jan. 11)

Giannis Antetokounmpo Player Prop Pick for Celtics vs Bucks (Thursday, Jan. 11) article feature image
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(Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) Pictured: Giannis Antetokounmpo

Thursday, Jan 11
7:30 p.m. ET
TNT
Giannis Antetokounmpo Under 32.5 Points (+100)

With his team struggling to play winning basketball, particularly recently, Giannis Antetokounmpo has been asked to step up and carry the load for the Bucks, especially on offense.

The Bucks forward is averaging 31.4 points per game this season, so we are getting his points line roughly more than one point above his average. So, with Antetokounmpo set to face a strong Celtics defense on national television, I'm fading the Greek Freak.

In his earlier meeting versus the Celtics, Antetokounmpo was held to 21 points on 7-of-20 shooting. Notably, he only got to the line 10 times (20% of his points) in that contest.

The Celtics have allowed the fewest opposing free throws per game, and in games where Antetokounmpo — while playing alongside Damian Lillard and Khris Middleton — fails to attempt at least 13 free throws, he’s averaging 29.1 points per game and has gone under this number in 10 of 14 games.

Al Horford's absence tonight won’t be so much of a setback as Oshae Brissett is capable of taking on the assignment off the bench. But unlike most teams, who’ll match an opposing big up against Antetokounmpo, the Celtics work a unique system that uses sturdy and lengthy wing defenders, mostly Jrue Holiday, as a first line of defense on the perimeter. That allows Boston to slow down drives and assist Kristaps Porzingis roaming inside for rim protection.

As a result, Boston limits quality looks and is tied for allowing the sixth-fewest opponent points inside the paint (where Antetokounmpo has made 88% of his field goals).

All the above should lead to an uncomfortable night for Antetokounmpo. And with a high total already, I love the chances of him going under his points prop tonight.

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Nick Sterling
May 21, 2024 UTC