NBA Odds, Betting Picks & Predictions: How to Bet Nuggets vs Bucks
Brian Sevald/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) of the Milwaukee Bucks.
- The Milwaukee Bucks host the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday night in a matchup of two of the top teams in the NBA.
- Milwaukee is finally healthy so is a strong favorite, especially when you consider Denver is on the second half of a back-to-back.
- Continue reading for a full breakdown of this matchup, including how to bet it.
Nuggets vs Bucks Odds
|Time||8 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
|Updated odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
Two of the best teams in the league meet at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee Wednesday with the Bucks favored against the Nuggets.
The Nuggets lead the Western Conference with a 34-14 record, but are only 12-10 on the road this season. They have failed to cover the spread in 13 of their 22 road games, but seven points is a big spread for the best in the West.
Finally healthy, the Bucks are starting their climb up the Eastern Conference standings yet again. They are 30-17 overall this season and an impressive 18-5 at home. The Bucks have covered the spread in 16 of their 18 wins at home.
Let’s find the best way to approach this matchup between two juggernauts.
The Nuggets are playing the second of a back-to-back after squeaking by Tuesday night, 99-98 over the Pelicans. They will stay on the road for two more games playing against two of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. The Nuggets are looking to stay on their hot streak, winning 20 of their last 24 games.
Having the back-to-back MVP Nikola Jokic healthy again helps in a huge way. Jokic missed two games before returning Tuesday night and picking up right where he left off. He finished with his sixth triple-double in his last seven games. Over that time he is averaging 24.6 points, 12.6 rebounds and 11.7 assists per game.
Jokic is leading the Nuggets in points, rebounds, assists, usage rate and nearly every other offensive statistic possible. Outside of Jokic, Jamal Murray has had a great season after missing all of last year with an injury. Not only is Murray scoring 18.9 points, but he is also averaging a career-high 5.7 assists.
Murry and Jokic were big reasons the Nuggets hung on to win against the Pelicans. Murray had 25 points and seven assists, while playing 40 minutes. He needed a big game with Michael Porter Jr. and Bones Hyland out. Their status is up in the air at the time of this writing, but this is the Jokic show regardless.
Aaron Gordon has also been awesome in his second full season with the Nuggets. Playing alongside Jokic has allowed so many opportunities for Gordon to fill it up. He is shooting a career-high 58.2% from the field and 37.7% from behind the arc. His 16.7 points per game ranks third on the team.
Jokic seemingly never has a bad game, but if he does this Nuggets team is in deep trouble. There is a slight chance he misses this contest on a back-to-back after playing 36 minutes in his first game back from a hamstring injury. Even if he plays, this is a difficult spot as the Bucks are tough to beat at home.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton have only played six games together all season. The Bucks are 4-2 when the “Big 3” are all in the lineup. That includes last game where they scored a season-high 150 points, which was tied for the second-highest in the league this season.
Antetokounmpo has taken another step forward this year, averaging a career-high 30.9 points per game while shooting 52.4% from the field. It is the eighth-straight year where he has shot better than 50%. The Nuggets are allowing 52.1 points per game in the paint, which ranks as the seventh-highest in the league.
This is a pretty strong spot for the Greek Freak, but he may still be on a slight minutes restriction after missing five straight games with a knee injury. Last game was also Middleton’s first game in nearly a month as he has only played in eight games all season. Middleton played 15 minutes off the bench, but there is a chance he enters the starting lineup again in this spot.
One player who is for sure out for the Bucks is Bobby Portis. He has recorded four straight double-doubles, so missing him on a night where they play against the back-to-back MVP is not ideal. Portis is averaging a double-double for the first time in his career with 14.4 points and 10.1 rebounds.
In his third season with the Bucks, Holiday has increased his points, rebounds and assists per game with the team despite shooting just 46.8% from the field. He is still one of the league’s premier guard defenders, which has helped the Bucks be one of the best defensive teams in the league.
A healthy Bucks team is a scary team, especially playing at home. After a full day of rest, expect Antetokounmpo and Middleton to get additional minutes in this contest. It is hard to bet against a fully arsenal Bucks team at Fiserv Forum.
Covering a seven-point spread feels like a tall task against the best team in the Western Conference, but the Bucks have looked nearly unbeatable at home this season. The Pelicans took the Nuggets down to the wire Tuesday night, so there could be some tired legs coming into play on a back-to-back.
Take the healthy Bucks to cover the seven-point spread at home. Coming off of a 150-point outing, expect the Bucks to stay hot and lean on their defense that ranks third in Defensive Rating (110.4).
If Jokic is ruled out, I would take the Bucks by double-digits. There is a lot of firepower in this matchup and plenty of news that may come out. Take the Bucks at -7.
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