Jordan’s NBA Picks: 52-34
Brooklyn (39-40 SU & 42-37 ATS) vs Milwaukee (59-20 SU & 47-29 ATS)
Saturday, 5:00 PM EST, NBATV
Free NBA Pick: OVER 1H
Best Line Offered: Bookmaker
The Bucks are in an interesting spot on Saturday. They have already clinched the top playoff spot, but their accolades are still incomplete. Could the Bucks shoot for one more pride win on Saturday before resting players down the stretch, or will that resting start on Saturday with some of the Bucks’ stars?
60-Win Season In Reach
Since the playoffs start a week from today, there is some incentive to get players one more game before shutting them down for the rest of the regular season. If the Bucks’ stars sit out the final three games of the regular season, they could come into the playoffs with some rust.
Now, I doubt that will matter against the eventual 8th seed, (aka the sacrificial lamb) but it is something to think about if you are Mike Budenholzer and the Bucks’ training staff.
However, the Bucks have one more accolade that could motivate them to play out Saturday night as a playoff warm up before resting their main players for the final two games.
There are only four Bucks teams in the history of the franchise that has reached 60 wins and the last one was 38 years ago in the 1980-81 season. While they have three shots at it, it would be smart to go for the win tonight against a desperate Nets team. The Nets need this win and so they should put up a nice fight. Since it’s probable a little too early to shut down any players, I see the Bucks playing everyone tonight, even if some of the Bucks’ starters have their minutes reduced a little.
The Sharp Pick
On the other side you have a Brooklyn team that really needs a win. They have struggled lately and after a widely successful season, they are in danger of falling far enough down the playoff ladder where a first round exit is all but guaranteed.
That should lead to the Nets coming out with some fire in the early stages of this game. They have not played well on the road this season at all, especially on offense. However, desperation does some strange things to teams and with the fact pace of both clubs, I think it plays a factor early in this one.
The Bucks’ home defense is extremely good, but with nothing to play for except some pride and franchise accomplishments, I don’t think that defense will be as locked in as usual.
On the flip side, the Nets are going to be attacking the basket all game in hopes of getting the thin Milwaukee front court in foul trouble. If they can accomplish this, I think they have some success offensively.
Two of the three meetings between these two teams have been very high scoring in the first halves. Despite the shortening of the total odds for the full game, the first half spread and totals have stayed the same. That should lend to some extra value in the over.