Free NBA Picks: Bet Rising Hawks & 'Under' Against Bucks Squad

Kevin Stott

Saturday, February 20, 2016 1:13 PM GMT

Paul Millsap and the Hawks open up the doors of Philips Arena in Atlanta on Saturday night to face the struggling Milwaukee Bucks. Let's review the NBA odds now!

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Final Score Prediction: Hawks 101 Bucks 87
NBA Picks: Hawks -8.5 & Under 205 
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

 

Milwaukee Bucks vs. Atlanta Hawks
So you thought you might like to go to the show... The Atlanta Hawks (24-17 SU, 14-7-12 ATS Home) welcome the whirlpooling Milwaukee Bucks (22-32 SU, 27-26-1 ATS) to Philips Arena in Atlanta on Saturday night in this second of three meetings between these teams this NBA Regular Season. NBA odds makers have opened the Hawks up as solid 9-point favorites (The Greek) here with the game’s Total (Points) set at 205 (The Greek).

 

Milwaukee Bucks
The Milwaukee Bucks (7-24 SU on Road, 14-17-0 ATS on Road) find themselves in 14th place in the Eastern Conference heading into post-All-Star Break play, 5½ games off the 8th and final Playoff spot in the conference. One problem Milwaukee (98.1 PF-102.9 PA) has had so far this season is in scoring Points, and the Bucks 98.1 ppg ranks 25th in the NBA. In their last game before the Break, Milwaukee beat the Washington Wizards, 99-92, at Home in Milwaukee as F Giannis Antetokounmpo (17 points, 13 rebounds), SF Jabari Parker (17 points, 9 rebounds), G Khris Middleton (27 points, 9 assists, 6 rebounds) and reserve Greg Monroe (12 points, 9 rebounds) all had solid games for the hosts who won their second straight. However, Milwaukee (2,500/1 to win NBA Championship, Ladbrokes) is just 3-7 SU over its L10 games and needs players like starting C Miles Plumlee, starting G OJ Mayo, G Michael Carter-Williams, Jerryd Bayless and UNLV Rookie Rashad Vaughn to turn it up another notch if the Bucks and Head Coach Jason Kidd are going to have any chance at making the Playoffs. PF John Henson (Back) is Out Indefinitely for the Bucks while PG Greivis Vasquez (Knee) is Out until mid-April.

 

Atlanta Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks (17-9 SU Home, 13-12 ATS Home) are a much different team than they were at this time last season, and when talk of trading starting C Al Horford or PG George Teague can’t sit well with Head Coach Mike Budenholzer and can’t be good for Team Chemistry and Confidence heading into the Regular Season’s (theoretical) 2nd Half. In their last game before the All-Star Break, the Hawks beat the Bulls, 113-90 at the United Center in Chicago as those two theoretically dispensable players—Horford and Teague—led the Hawks (19-15 SU vs. Eastern Conference) in scoring with 16 and 16 points respectively, while PF Paul Millsap (15 points) and SG (and former Bull) Kyle Korver (10 points) were both in double-digits as were an amazing four players off the Atlanta Bench including PF Mike Muscala (11 points), PF Mike Scott (10 points), SF Thabo Sefolosha (10 points) and secret-weapon PG Dennis Schroeder (18 points) who was 6-for-10 from the Field in the Windy City.Vrooooom. Atlanta’s Bench scored 53 points in the win, so why trading either Horford—especially with backup C Tiago Splitter now out for the year—and/or Teague from a team that can have eight guys in double-digits is a mystery. One big problem for the Hawks Hawks (102.4 PF-99.7 PA) heading down the stretch now is the news from Tuesday that C Splitter (Hip) will require surgery and will miss the rest of the season as well as the opportunity to play for his native Brazil in the 2016 Summer Olympics. The Hawks (30/1 to win NBA Championship, Unibet)—who opened up the 2nd Half play on Friday night hosting Dwyane Wade and the Heat (Hawks -8½, 197, Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook)—were at such a high at this point last season and trading Teague and/or Horford would stunt any growth this franchise has had and if often seems the general lack of interest and support the Hawks get from the Atlanta community takes its toll on the players and coaches psyches....as does the problem all others in the Eastern Conference have had and will continue to have until LeBron James is gone—trying to get by those damned Cleveland Cavaliers. And where we bitch that the West is a just two-horse race, consider the East here where prospects for the other 14 teams are even worse. Cam Newton can pretend he’s Superman but the real Truth is that it’s been LBJ for the L10 years or so. And we all best recognize, fans or not.

 

Series Trends, Logical Reasoning and Picks
The last time these two met, Milwaukee (29-25 O/U)—one of the four teams to beat the Golden State Warriors (48-4) this season—won in Milwaukee on Jan. 15 in OT, 108-101 (ATL -4½, 206½) and in the L10 meetings in this series the Hawks are 6-4 ATS with Atlanta (27-28 O/U) going 8-2 SU in those last 10 games. The Total (O/U) is 5-5 ATS those L10 meetings but the Under is 4-1 ATS in the L5, with the last meeting going Over the Total (206½) only because that aforementioned game went to a 5-minute OT period. (And the Under bettors cursed the Gambling Gods.) And the Over is 8-2 ATS the Hawks L10 game against the NBA Central, however, the Under is 8-2 ATS in the L8 Atlanta games on the Road while the Under is 16-6 ATS the L22 Hawks games on Saturdays. The Bucks are 7-1 ATS the L8 vs. the NBA Southeast Division and the Road team is 8-2 ATS the L10 meetings in this series. Despite this being the second night of back-to-backs, with the Hawks at Home and able to get scoring from so many places, the NBA pick is with the Home team and the team (Atlanta) which is an impressive 11-5 ATS the L16 meetings (68.8%) in the series. It’s a positive that Atlanta remains intact after the NBA Trade Deadline and the Hawks (20/1 to Win Eastern Conference, Unibet) should finish stronger than most anticipate with that talented Roster. And the Total pick has to be on the Under with only that OT session in the last meeting preventing the L5 meetings from going Under the Total and both teams having played on Friday night (Bucks at Charlotte Hornets) and probably a little bit tired in this game after not playing for almost a week because of the All-Star Break and then suddenly having to play two games in the span of 27 hours.