NBA Playoffs Tips & Preview – Bucks @ Celtics (Game 2)

The playoffs are underway and the daily preview takes it to the rim with NBA tips for Game 2 of the Semi-final series between East big guns Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks.

09:00 (AEST), Wed 4th Mar @ TD Garden, Boston

History: Played 263: Celtics 135 V Bucks 128

Last meeting: May 2nd, 2022: Bucks 101 d Celtics 89 at TD Garden

Final Thoughts: After coasting through the First Round, Boston Celtics will be hellbent on avoiding falling behind 2-0 to Milwaukee Bucks in their Semi-final series before it heads to Wisconsin.

The third-seeded Celtics swept the star-studded Nets 4-0 with Jayson Tatum proving unstoppable, though the average margin was just 4.5 points. The Bucks accounted for the Bulls in five games on the back of Giannis Antetokoumpo’s huge numbers and impact, closing out the series with three wins by 16-plus margins.

Milwaukee took the Semi-final ascendancy with a 101-89 Game 1 victory in Boston. Antetokounmpo (24 pts, 13 reb, 12 ast) racked up triple-double while Jrue Holiday (25 pts, 9 reb, 5 ast, 3 stl) top-scored in a fine all-round display. Bobby Portis contributed 15 points and 11 rebounds. Tatum (21 pts, 6 reb, 6 ast), the only Celtic to score more than 12 points, was relatively well-controlled after averaging 29.5 points against the Nets.

The Celitcs were a dismal 33.3 percent shooting from the floor in just their seventh loss from their last 37 games. Bucks big man Brook Lopez’s dominant defensive display in the paint repeatedly stymied the Celtics.

The Bucks were missing Khris Middleton (MCL), who is not expected back for Game 2. Meanwhile, Marcus Smart is likely to be questionable for the Celtics.

The Celtics are $1.52 favourites to square the ledger at TD Garden – and they should improve significantly after a flat offensive showing. But the manner of the Bucks’ Game 1 victory makes it hard to turn down their underdog when they’re getting a couple of free buckets.

Best Bet: Handicap – Bucks +4.5 @ $1.90