Bucks vs Thunder Best Bets: Odds, Pick, Prediction Tonight

Bucks vs Thunder Best Bets: Odds, Pick, Prediction Tonight article feature image

(Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images) Pictured: Bobby Portis.

Bucks vs. Thunder Odds

Friday, Apr 12
8:00 p.m. ET
Bucks Odds
-110o / -110u
Thunder Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Here's everything you need to know about Bucks vs. Thunder on Friday, April 12 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today's game.

The Bucks travel to Oklahoma City to face off against the Thunder in what might be described as a juggernaut battle between East and West if not for key injuries to the Bucks.

Giannis Antetokounmpo left early against Boston on Tuesday with a left calf strain that will sideline him for the remainder of the regular season. Additionally, Damian Lillard has been added to the injury report as doubtful with a groin issue while Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez and Bobby Portis are all questionable.

Let's get to our Bucks vs. Thunder prediction and pick.

Milwaukee Bucks

The Bucks are just one game ahead of the Knicks for the 2-seed, but the benefit of the 2- vs. 3-seed is debatable. The Heat or the Sixers could end up as the 7-seed and it’s not a clear-cut benefit that a potential second-round home-court advantage is worth playing those two as opposed to the Magic or the Pacers, who currently hold the 5- and 6-seeds, respectively.

I think the Bucks will prioritize Lillard’s health over worrying about the seeding, which means they will likely be without him in addition to Antetokounmpo.

Regardless if Lillard plays, I expect Sixth Man of the Year candidate Bobby Portis to step up in his absence. Portis sees a 4.4 percent usage spike and has averaged 19.4 points and 10.8 rebounds in games without Antetokounmpo in the lineup. Specifically against the Thunder, Portis has averaged 14.7 points and 11 rebounds per game in seven games since the Bubble season.

Oklahoma City Thunder

The Thunder have more to play for, as they’re very much in contention for the 1-seed. They have the same record as the Timberwolves and are only one game behind the Nuggets, meaning they’ll need to win Friday and hope the Wolves and Nuggets lose out.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is also at the tail end of an MVP race with Nikola Jokić as the betting favorite. This is one of his last chances to make a statement before the voters make up their minds on the award. With Jokic at -5000 at some books, it seems all but decided that he’ll win his third MVP in four years, but Gilgeous-Alexander likely isn’t concerned with the betting odds and is looking to put an exclamation point on an MVP-caliber season.

Against that drop coverage of the Bucks, he’s in a prime spot to do so. The Bucks allow the third-most midrange shots in the league, and that’s SGA’s sweet spot. He takes 51% of his shots from midrange — in the 93rd percentile for point guards. Gilgeous-Alexander should get to his spots easily Friday night, especially without Antetokounmpo's defensive presence to deter him.

Bucks vs. Thunder

Betting Pick & Prediction

I give the Thunder a massive motivational edge in this game. Given the Bucks' injury report, they’re essentially punting on this game. That makes -13.5 for OKC a short line despite how massive it might seem.

The Thunder are not a team that lets off the gas and they’ve lost the last six games to the Bucks, giving them even less reason to let up. The Thunder are 17-11 ATS when losing the previous head-to-head matchup.

This season, OKC is 11-3 ATS against teams with a .450 or lower win percentage, and that’s exactly what the Bucks are without Antetokounmpo and Lillard — not to mention if Lopez and Middleton also sit. The Thunder are also 12-8 ATS when laying nine or more points on the spread, so I’m not worried about the hefty line. I think we’re looking at a 20-point win at least.

If Portis plays, I’ll take his points + rebounds line, but follow in the app (@nbaWatts) since we don’t have lines yet. It might be inflated with the rest of the starters sitting out, although the more people out, the more usage for Portis, so I will likely take his Over regardless.

Pick: Thunder -13.5 | Bobby Portis Over Points + Rebounds

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