The Toronto Raptors head to the Fiserv Forum on Wednesday night  to take on the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 1 of the 2019 Eastern Conference Finals

Basketball Dramatic Win

The Raptors are coming off their dramatic Game 7 win over the Philadelphia 76ers where Kawhi Leonard hit the first Game 7 game-winning buzzer-beater in NBA playoff history. With the score tied at 90-all with 4.2 seconds left, Leonard picked up the pass and dribbled to the corner where he launched a tough fade-away basket over the outstretched arms of Joel Embiid. The ball bounced several times on the rim before obediently dropping in.

Leonard scored 41 points on 16-39 shooting. Serge Ibaka had a big night with 19 points while Pascal Siakam had 11 points and 11 rebounds for Toronto. The only other time Toronto has gone to the Eastern Conference Finals was in 2016 where they lost to LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in six games. The Raptors finished the regular season two games behind the Bucks and lost three out of their last four regular season meetings.

What are the Moneyline Odds?
Toronto Raptors Logo

Raptors

+215

Milwaukee Bucks Logo

Bucks

-255

Odds from betonline.ag as of 5/15/19

Basketball Fear The Deer

Fear the Deer used to be just a marketing slogan but after taking out the Boston Celtics rather easily, that may be the message the Bucks are sending to the remaining teams. The Bucks lost Game 1 to the Celtics at their home floor but they bounced back with four straight wins with an aggregate winning margin of 65 points to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 2000.

Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks looked like they were on another gear when they played the Celtics. Antetokounmpo had 20 points, 8 rebounds and 8 assists in the close-out game while Khris Middleton added 19 and Eric Bledsoe 18 points. With veterans George Hill and Nikola Mirotic having excellent games during the playoffs, the Bucks are going to be tough to beat.

Basketball Who Wins?

The Raptors are 7-3 SU in their last 10 games played. Toronto is 3-2 SU in their last five games played on the road. The Bucks are 8-2 SU in their last 10 games played. Milwaukee is 4-2 SU in their last six games played at home. Head to head, the Raptors are 6-4 SU in their last 10 games played against the Bucks. Toronto is also 7-3 SU in their last seven road games against the Bucks.

The Raptors enter this game with the momentum of their incredible Game 7 finish against the Philadelphia 76ers. Kawhi Leonard is having a sensational postseason and looks unstoppable when he is in his element. Leonard has been here before so expect him to lead the charge again.

Giannis Antetokounmpo has likewise been an unstoppable force during this playoffs. The leading candidate for 2019 NBA MVP was just too dominant against the Celtics that Boston didn’t have an answer for him. Look for The Greek Freak to stamp his might again but it will be interesting to see if former Defensive Player of the Year winner Kawhi Leonard is going to guard him during the series.

The Bucks enter this game as the NBA betting favorites and have rested longer after finishing Boston in just five games. Milwaukee has the home court advantage here and they were 33-8 SU at home during the regular season. This should be a close game but I think the home team shoots better on Wednesday and gets on board first. I’m picking the Milwaukee Bucks to beat the Toronto Raptors on 5/15/19.

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Basketball Other Bets To Make

Toronto is 5-5 ATS in their last 10 games played. The Raptors are 2-3 ATS in their last five games on the road. Milwaukee is 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games played. The Bucks are 4-2 ATS in their last six games played at home. Head to head, the Raptors are 6-4 ATS in the last 10 meetings between these two ball clubs. Toronto is also 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games played in Milwaukee.

What are the Spread Odds?
Toronto Raptors Logo

Raptors

+6 (-110)

Milwaukee Bucks Logo

Bucks

-6 (-110)

Odds from betonline.ag as of 5/15/19

The Raptors are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games after an ATS loss, 1-5 ATS in their last six games against Central Division teams, 6-13 ATS in their last 19 games against an opponent with a winning home record of at least .600 and 4-1 ATS in their last five road games in Milwaukee. The Bucks are 3-0-1 ATS in their last four games against an opponent with a winning record of at least .600, 4-1 ATS in their last five home games played, 5-14-1 ATS in their last 20 games when playing on two-days rest.

Both teams have reached this point because of outstanding superstar play and a deep bench. But Milwaukee only got deeper with the return of former Rookie of the Year Malcolm Brogdon. The Raptors are still on a high after their dramatic Game 7 win over the Philadelphia 76ers but the Bucks are still feeling good about eliminating the fancied Boston Celtics. Both Kawhi Leonard and Giannis Antetokounmpo are having excellent postseasons and you can make a case for both teams here, really. But the Bucks won their season series 3-1 and they are playing at the Fiserv Forum where they lost just eight times in 41 regular season games. I’m going with the home team to win and cover here. Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks -6

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The total has gone under in seven out of the last 10 games played by the Raptors. Toronto has seen the total go under in four out of their last five games played on the road. The over is 6-4 in the Bucks’ last 10 games played. Milwaukee has seen the total split between the over and under at 3-3 in their last six home games played. Head to head, the over is 6-4 in the last 10 games between these two teams. The under is 6-4 in their last 10 meetings in Milwaukee.

What are the Totals Odds?
Toronto Raptors Logo

Raptors

O 217 -110

Milwaukee Bucks Logo

Bucks

U 217 -110

Odds from betonline.ag as of 5/15/19

The Raptors are averaging just 103.1 points per game in their last 10 games played and have scored at least 110 points only twice in those 10 games. The Bucks meanwhile have averaged 116.89 points per game during this postseason and have scored at least 113 points in all but one of their playoff games. Both of these teams are loaded with scorers who can put up points on the board. It’s just that Toronto chose to lock down Philadelphia. I’m not sure if they can stop the Bucks’ offense from scoring so the Raptors will have to resort to keeping up with Milwaukee by scoring tons of points as well. I see a shootout between two young and explosive teams. Prediction: Over 217

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