Milwaukee Bucks at Toronto Raptors
Time: 6 PM EST (NBA TV)
Spread: TOR -6.5
Betting odds c/o Bovada
The Milwaukee Bucks are 0-2 on the season and will take to Toronto to face the 2-0 Raptors in a game which will air on NBA TV at 6 PM (ET). Early odds showed the Raptors as 6.5 point favorites.
Milwaukee fell badly to the New York Knicks on opening night, losing by 25 points. Game 2 saw the Bucks fall to the Washington Wizards 118-113. It is not the start that head coach Jason Kidd expected from his club, which was one of the surprise teams of the 2015 season. The Bucks have a long, athletic team that has immense potential. But Bucks fans will not file into seats to see a team based on potential.
Free agent signee Greg Monroe is off to a good start in his new home. The former Georgetown Hoya is averaging 22 points, 9.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game. Giannis Antetokounmpo did not play in the opener (suspension) but scored 27 points on 9 of 15 shooting against the Wizards. The 6’11” jack-of-all trades is still coming into his own as an NBA player, but he is thought to have the highest upside of the 2013 draft class.
Giannis’ defensive abilities alone can change a game, and the Bucks created its identity and success last season on the defensive end.
2014 Rookie of the Year Michael Carter-Williams is seeming to get his foothold in Milwaukee too, which will only increase the potency of this team when it gels. MCW is averaging 16.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 7.5 assists. He has been known to be a stat stuffer, but this season he will find himself with a much more talented and relevant team than those Sixers teams he suited up with prior to being dealt to the Bucks.
Re-signed swingman Khris Middleton may not be worth $15 million a year, but he got it due to the market, and he has been effective posting 14.5 points per game while having shot 4 of 10 from three-point range this season. The Bucks have the talent to become a good offensive team, but its strength remains its ‘D.’
The Toronto Raptors defeated the Indiana Pacers in its opener 106-99 and handed the Celtics a 10-point loss on Friday night. Swingman DeMar DeRozan is off to a hot start, averaging 24 points per game. Problematic is his 37.5 percent shooting, but it is early in the season and probably mostly an anomaly at this point.
Kyle Lowry is seeking to build on his first career All-Star start last season and he is posting 18.5 points, five boards and 7.5 assists through two games. Lowry has a nice outing in the win over the Pacers scoring 23 points on 8 of 17 shooting while dishing out six assists as well. He is the key and motor to the Raptors strong offensive attack.
Keep an eye on Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas. He is averaging 13.5 points and 12.5 rebounds per game but will face on of his toughest interior tests in Milwaukee. His play is one of the keys to the Raptors winning this game as NBA oddsmakers favor them to.