The Summer League action hits Round 2 as the teams that were off on Wednesday now get in gear on Thursday. Here’s a look at our picks for Thursday:
Milwaukee Bucks vs. Phoenix Suns
I was off about the Bucks and the Rockets yesterday when I picked the Rockets to advance. They had been playing really well in the tournament and their offense had been leading the way. The offense did its part yesterday, scoring 93 points, but their defense was disastrous as the Bucks scored 97 points. Milwaukee actually shot 54.5% from the field, 60% from three and earned 27 free throw attempts. The Bucks actually coughed up 25 turnovers yet the Rockets still couldn’t get the job done. At any rate, this was the Bucks first win in Vegas and I expect the Suns to win in this spot. Milwaukee is built around Sean Kilpatrick and Rashad Vaughn, but they really haven’t been getting much help other than that tandem.
As for the Suns, they’ve been off resting and I like how they’ve been playing so far. They did lose to the Rockets but other than that performance, they’ve looked strong at both ends. They’ve scored at least 86 points in each contest, getting balanced efforts from Devin Booker, T.J. Warren, Alex Len and Archie Goodwin. I’ll take a shot with the Suns in this spot as they should get the win here.
NBA Pick: Suns at BetOnline
Chicago Bulls vs. Toronto Raptors
The Bulls and Raptors have already squared off once in Vegas where the Raptors won 81-66 and I’ll be looking for a similar result. The key to the Bulls success in Summer League action has been the performance of Doug McDermott and Bobby Portis. Last night, they combined for 32 points and 15 rebounds. However, when facing the Raptors, they had just 16 points and seven rebounds.
We had the Bulls yesterday in our picks and that was mostly because they had an easy matchup. Cleveland had proven to be one of the weaker teams in Las Vegas and they showed that again yesterday. They had just 33 points in the first half, allowed the Bulls to shoot 48.6% and shot just 56.5% from the free throw line themselves. The Bulls will have a much tougher time getting going against the Raptors.
Toronto has been strong throughout action in Vegas as they are a perfect 3-0. They have been getting a balanced effort with players like Norman Powell stepping up and former first-round picks Lucas Nogueira and Bruno Caboclo looking good. The last time these teams met, the Raptors have five players in double figures. The Raptors won by 15 but probably have some room for improvement as they made just five-of-18 from three and 14-of-22 from the charity stripe. That being the case, take the Raptors to win and cover here with your NBA picks.
NBA Pick: Raptors at 5Dimes