NBA Playoffs Betting: Hawks vs. Bucks Game 2 Odds and Picks (June 25, 2021)
The Atlanta Hawks served notice that they were capable of surprises when they upset the Philadelphia 76ers in the playoffs. So there shouldn’t have been anything too shocking about them knocking off the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night.
So now they’re up a game as we move to Game 2 of this series. It’s slated for 8:35 PM ET at the Fiserv Forum.
This is the way they’ve posted it at BetAnySports, with the Bucks laying a healthy number:
Atlanta Hawks vs. Milwaukee Bucks NBA Playoffs Game 2 Odds
|Hawks||+7½ ( -110 )||226 ( -110 )||+280|
|Bucks||-7½ ( -110 )||226 ( -110 )||-340|
It was a Young man’s game
Perhaps the Bucks felt as if they could construct a strategy for dealing with Atlanta’s high-scoring guard, Trae Young. After all, in the one meeting this season when Young played, he made just three of 17 field goal attempts. But nothing at all worked against him in Game 1. Young poured in 48 points as his team scored a 116-113 road win. He added eleven assists and even had seven rebounds, while taking 34 shots. He also took three-quarters of his team’s free throws. His Usage figure of 46.8% was astronomical.
In other words, he is about as involved as can be. And if Milwaukee is going to fashion a defensive effort that will help them get this series even if will have to start with slowing him down.
Bogdan was bogged down
One of the big questions for the Hawks was whether Bogdan Bogdanovic could get some shooting touch back. However, a knee injury has made it difficult for him. In the series against Philadelphia he hit only 28% of his three-point attempts. In Game 1 the other night he was limited to just two shots from the arc and was 1-for-6 all told.
The fact of the matter is, Atlanta didn’t have a whole lot of success from downtown. They went just 8-for-32 (25%) on those shots. But, they won anyway.
Another big question coming into the series was whether Milwaukee guard Jrue Holiday was going to be able to get it done at both ends of the floor. We know he is a defensive stopper – that goes way back. In fact, he has been named to the NBA’s All-Defensive team three times.
But while he was chasing around Brooklyn’s guards in the previous series, his offense suffered. Holiday shot 36% against the Sixers, even though we know he’s more capable.
Obviously part of his responsibility involved challenging Young, and that didn’t work well. But he did have one of his better games at the other end of the floor. Like his teammate, Giannis Antetokounmpo, he made 14 of 25 shots from the floor. Five of those shots were triples.
So who knows – maybe his big offensive game took away from his defense.
Our NBA playoff pick in Game 2
The Bucks were even worse from beyond the arc than the Hawks were (8-for-36), and we know that they’ve been a lot better than that for most of the year. We can tell you that the pace of the first game was something that suited the Bucks. And remember that they took more shots per game than any team in the NBA.
While we don’t expect Young to run wild like he did in Game 1, the Hawks have a few places they can make up the difference. If these teams just connected from three-point territory at a rate that matched what their opponents allow, there could have been 25-30 more points scored. So we’re comfortable going OVER the total on this one.
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