Pelicans at Bucks Preview and Betting Pick: The New Orleans Pelicans (13-17) will be going against the Milwaukee Bucks (19-13) on TNT starting at 9:30 p.m. ET on the Bucks’ home court and recently built Fiserv Forum. Below, I will be sharing with you my picks and predictions for when these two high-powered offenses clash together.
Odds, Spreads, and Lines
Last updated: Wednesday 8:15 p.m.
Moneyline: Pelicans (+323), Bucks (-420)
Against the spread: Pelicans +9(-110), Bucks -9 (-110)
Over/Under: O 240 (-110), U 240 (-105)
Jrue Holiday (Healthy & Safety protocols) – Did not play Tuesday against Timberwolves
Bucks Back on Track?
The Milwaukee Bucks were on a 5 game losing streak until they snapped it with a victory against the Thunder on 2/18. 3 of those losses were double digit deficits and games I’m sure they wished they had back. Luckily, they bounced back with 3 consecutive much needed wins.
Although, those 3 wins came against struggling teams. When I say struggling, I really mean well below .500 winning percentage and little chance of making a playoff run.
Bucks Last 3 Wins:
2/19 vs OKC (12-19) 98-95 Win
2/21 vs Kings (12-19) 128-115 Win
2/23 vs Timberwolves (7-25) 139-122 Win
So, are the Bucks really back on track just because they were able to handle well below average teams? In my opinion, the answer is no. Recently, they have not been able to accomplish the success they were able to put on display earlier this season.
Last Time These 2 Teams Met
The last time these two teams met dates back to 1/29 on the home court of the Pelicans in the Smoothie King Center. The final score was 131-126 in favor of the Pelicans. The Pelicans took a 68-45 point lead into halftime giving them enough of a cushion to lean on heading into the 2nd half.
However, this tells a story of the fact that the Bucks were able to compete and bring the game within reach, ultimately only losing by 5 points. They dominated the 2nd half outsourcing the Pelicans 81-63. MVP candidate and former MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo had a monster game with 38 points and 11 rebounds.
I anticipate him to have an even more dominant game with the revenge factor coming into play. Steven Adams will be guarding him, but no-one is a match for his strength and ability to work magic in the paint.
Why Such a High Over/Under?
The over/under for this matchup has been set at a high number of 240 total points. Why? Both teams tend to launch 3-pointers and drive to the hoop hard drawing many fouls. Defenses have trouble containing players like Giannis and Zion resulting in them getting to the free throw line often and putting each other’s teams in the bonus.
The bonus can play a huge factor throughout an entire game. Firstly, it stops the clock and allows the potential of adding to a team’s total while time isn’t running. Secondly, as players are going to the free-throw line more often it gives them the ability to boost their confidence and heat up from the outside.
Pelicans at Bucks Preview and Betting Pick
As I mentioned, the Pelicans won 131-126 in their last head-to-head matchup with one another. Do the math and you get a total of 257 points scored, which would be over the line for this game.
Also, you must consider that the public will look at the over/under being 240 and think to themselves, “How is that possible? I should hammer the under.” Vegas is smarter than you. They know what you’re thinking when you see a line like that and they are using that to their advantage.
I project this high-paced game will result in a ton of scoring immediately.
Free Pick: Over 240