- The Boston Celtics are back as series favorites after beating the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 2 of their series.
- Boston is now the -140 favoites to win the series while the Bucks move down as +115 underdogs.
- Milwaukee has opened as a -3 point favorite in Game 3 on Saturday night at the Fiserv Forum.
The Boston Celtics lost their status as series favorites when they lost to the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 1 of their best-of-seven Eastern Conference Semifinals Round matchup. But after a strong bounce-back effort in Game 2 on Tuesday night, the C’s are back in the driver’s seat.
Boston opened as the -165 betting favorite to win the series while the Bucks hit the betting boards at +135. Those odds rose to -225 for the Celtics after it was learned that Khris Middleton is likely to miss the entire season. But after dropping to +175, the Bucks turned the tables and became the -125 favorites by beating the Celtics in Game 1. Boston however, stormed back in the series with a dominant Game 2 performance to reclaim the title of betting favorites at -140, with the Bucks dropping back as +115 series underdogs.
Jaylen Brown Put on a Clinic
Jaylen Brown is putting on a CLINIC 🔥
HALF: 25 PTS (9/10 FGM) pic.twitter.com/Ikg68EVOFd
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) May 4, 2022
After scoring just 12 points in Game 1, Jaylen Brown erupted for 25 points in the first half, cashing the over on his scoring prop bet of 24.5 points after only two quarters of play. Brown would struggle the rest of the way, shooting 2-8 from the field in the second half after a 9-10 first-half shooting. Despite that, Brown led all scorers with 30 points while also grabbing five rebounds and issuing five assists. Brown also did his part on defense with two steals and one blocked shot.
With Brown cooking early, the Celtics took an 18-3 lead off the gates, forcing the Bucks to call an early timeout. Boston would lead by 11 at the end of the first quarter and extend the advantage to 25 at the half. Milwaukee cut Boston’s lead to 94-82 but Jayson Tatum hit a three-pointer that killed the Bucks’ comeback attempt.
Tatum also had a big game with 29 points on 10-20 shooting with 3 rebounds, 8 assists, 3 steals, and one blocked shot while making the big shots down the stretch for the Celtics. But while the big numbers were expected from Brown and Tatum, Grant Williams’ 21 points off the bench was the difference-maker for the Celtics. Williams made six out of nine three-point attempts as the Celtics shot 20-43 from deep after struggling from deep in Game 1.
Live by the Three
Live by the three…
The Celtics set a new playoff franchise record with 20 threes as they even the series.
Through two games, Boston has attempted 93 three-pointers and just 71 two-pointers 😳https://t.co/RJmwdO1wRW pic.twitter.com/Ua3StGZmVT
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) May 4, 2022
After struggling to make their three-pointers in Game 1, Boston made 45.6% of their three-point attempts in Game 2, setting a new franchise playoff record with 20 three-pointers made. The Celtics made 17 more three-pointers than Milwaukee, which is the second-largest discrepancy in an NBA playoff game. Converted to points, the Celtics scored 60 on three-pointers alone while the Bucks only had 9 points from deep. Surely, they missed Khris Middleton’s outside shooting in Game 2.
But while the Celtics tied the series at one game apiece, the Bucks already did what they had to do in Boston and that was to take one game. With the next three games to be played at the Fiserv Forum, the Bucks can close out the series and eliminate the Celtics if they hold court. Milwaukee was 27-14 SU at home during the regular season but dropped one home game to the Bulls in the previous round.
Milwaukee has opened as a -3 point spread favorite to beat the Celtics in Game 3 which will be played on Saturday on their home floor. However, they need to slow down Boston’s three-point shooting in order to take the series lead again. As good as the Bucks are offensive, they cannot match Boston’s firepower without Middleton. They need to beat Boston with defense, just like what they did in Game 1.