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Bucks vs Nets Game 5 Odds, Lineups, Picks and Injury News

Nick Krueger

by Nick Krueger in NBA Basketball

Updated Jun 15, 2021 · 10:23 AM PDT

Giannis Antetokounmpo dribbling
Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks will look for their third straight win against the Brooklyn Nets as the series shifts to Brooklyn for Game 5. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)
  • After winning two straight against Brooklyn, the Milwaukee Bucks are 4-point favorites in Game 5 on Tuesday (TNT, 8:30pm ET)
  • Nets guard Kyrie Irving (ankle) is out; James Harden now plans to return from his hamstring injury
  • Read below for a complete look at the matchup and a pick on the game

After dropping the first two games in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the Milwaukee Bucks suddenly appear to have the Brooklyn Nets on the ropes.

Key injuries to the Nets will keep Kyrie Irving out, and James Harden questionable in Game 5 at the Barclays Center. Still, the Bucks are just four-point favorites against a team they’ve now beaten in two consecutive games.

Milwaukee seems to have rediscovered a semblance of its offense after Game 4, which it has struggled to show to this point in the series. With a huge opportunity to take advantage of a reeling Brooklyn, the Bucks need to keep things clicking offensively to take control of the series.

With the news of James Harden’s potential addition to the Nets lineup, they moved from four to 2.5-point underdogs

Bucks vs Nets Game 5 Odds

Team Spread at FanDuel Moneyline Total
Milwaukee Bucks -2.5 (-104) -144 O 221.5 (-110)
Brooklyn Nets +2.5 (-118) +124 U 221.5 (-110)

Odds as of June 14th at 1:20pm

Injury Report

Brooklyn’s starting PG, Kyrie Irving, has been ruled out. James Harden was also expected to be ruled out, but as of Tuesday morning, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Harden is trying to get on the floor.

Early Tuesday afternoon, it was reported that Harden will indeed try to play in Game 5. He will test out the hamstring pregame and a decision will be made from there. If he’s able to go, Harden will likely start at the PG spot, shifting Mike James to the bench.

Irving hurt his ankle in the second quarter of Game 4 after he rolled it while coming down from a shot near the basket in the second quarter. Harden has been recovering from a hamstring injury he suffered in the first game of the series. Irving scored at least 20 points in each of the first three games in the series, while Harden averaged 23.8 points and 10.6 assists per game in the Nets’ first round series against the Boston Celtics.

Milwaukee has been without Donte DiVincenzo since the final game of its first round series against the Miami Heat. The guard had surgery to repair a ligament in his left ankle on June 8. Otherwise, the Bucks expect to have a near-complete rotation to play against the Nets, and should be the more confident side heading into Tuesday night.

Bucks vs Nets Projected Lineups

Jrue Holiday PG James Harden
Khris Middleton SG Joe Harris
P.J. Tucker SF Bruce Brown
Giannis Antetokounmpo PF Kevin Durant
Brook Lopez C Blake Griffin

Going for the Jugular

In Games 1-through-3, Milwaukee only averaged 30 points per game from three-point range. In Game 4, the Bucks exploded from distance, pouring in 48 points from deep.

The high total came in spite of a generally inefficient showing as a team from beyond the arc. Khris Middleton’s subpar three-point shooting continued in Game 4, but he made some decisive shots from distance as part of a 19-point outing. The Bucks shot just 34% from three as a team in the game, but the ones that went in seemed to create positive momentum swings with the home crowd cheering them on.

Brooklyn has held opponents to 37% from three-point range at home this season. However, with Irving off the floor, the potential for the Nets to push the score and defend the perimeter as well as they’re accustomed to is reduced. Kevin Durant has been up-and-down from three, but when he has made at least eight three-point attempts in a game during this series, he’s shot just 25%. That includes a 1-for-8 effort in Game 4.

Trust the Bucks?

The Bucks were playing with an ease that had eluded them in the earlier games of the series.

Game 5 has the potential to be a Durant takeover game, but he has scored in the neighborhood of around 30 points in each game of the series — and that wasn’t enough in the last two for Brooklyn. Even though he has a career plus-minus of -36 in playoff games where the series is tied at two apiece, the Nets need Durant to do even more than he already has against a team that appears to have the momentum coming in.

The final has finished under the projected point total in all but one game this season between these two. Each of the last three games have finished under the total set for Game 5 at 217, with Irving available for the majority of those games.

Milwaukee is 0-3 as a road underdog against the spread this season, and generally a poor ATS team on the road overall, as they have just covered 45% of the time. Sans Game 4, the Bucks have been a pretty lousy three-point shooting team in the playoffs, and even at their best they weren’t great.

Points will continue to come at a premium in this game, with an undermanned Nets squad and a Bucks team that hasn’t blown the doors off opponents on the road.

  • The Pick: Under 217 (-110)
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