Milwaukee Bucks (42-26) at Utah Jazz (42-25)
Monday, March 14th @ Vivint Area in Salt Lake City, UT
How to Watch
- 10:00 ET on ESPN
Betting Tape of the Tape:
|17-15 (on the road)||ATS (SITE)||14-19-1 (at home)|
|T-8th||PACE OF PLAY||19th|
- Line: MIL -1.0
- Over/Under: 230.5
Recent Play (last 10 games):
- Bucks: 7-3; 124.6 PG, 48.8 RPG, 25.6 APG, 6.6 SPG, and 2.8 BPG, while shooting 48.8% from the field and allowing 117.9 points.
- Jazz: 6-4; 113.3 PPG, 47.1 RPG, 23.0 APG, 7.2 SPG, and 4.8 BPG, while shooting 47.2% from the field and allowing 110.8 points per game
- Rudy Gobert; UTA, C: Questionable (Foot) Gobert claims that he plans to play tonight
- Bojan Bogdanovic; UTA, SF: Doubtful (Calf) Didn’t go through the shootaround
- Trent Forrest; UTA, SG: Questionable (wrist) Also didn’t play on Saturday
- DeAndre’ Bembry; MIL, SG: Out (Knee) Bembry has been ruled out for the season
With Rudy Gobert likely to return tonight, we should be treated to a tremendous showdown between two elite NBA squads and potential title contenders. The Bucks currently sit tied for 2ns in the Eastern Conference while the Jazz are 4th in the Western Conference.
A healthy Gobert is huge (literally) for the Jazz since the big man leads the entire league in rebounds per game at 14.7. He’s also tied for the league-led in blocks per game with 2.2, so his presence alone makes it incredibly hard for teams to score in the paint. However, the Jazz are a strong defensive unit overall, ranking 8th in FG% allowed and 9th in 3PT% allowed.
It will be a little bit of strength-versus-strength since the Bucks are 5th in the NBA in 3PT%, shooting 36.6% from deep, and are also 4th in the NBA in three-point attempts per game with 39. Given Gobert’s presence in the paint, you can be sure the Bucks will be looking to their top three-point shooters Jrue Holiday (41.6%), Patt Connaughton (40.7%), and Grayson Allen (39.6%) to put up points.
We also know that Giannis Antetokounmpo will not hesitate to attack Gobert in the middle. The Bucks’ star is averaging the second-most free throw attempts per game in the league at 11.6, just behind Joel Embiid, and has been playing tremendous basketball of late, averaging 31.4 points, 12.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists, and 1.6 blocks per game on 58.5% shooting from the field over the last two weeks. These teams haven’t played each other since November 31st, so the lack of familiarity could be a benefit for Giannis.
When the Jazz have the ball, we can expect a similar emphasis on outside scoring. The Jazz attempt the second-most threes in the league, at 40.4 a game, and hit on 36.3% of them, good for 6th in the league. This could be a major issue for a Bucks defense that ranks 15th in 3PT% on the season and dead last in opponent’s three-pointers made per game at 14.1. If the Jazz are able to get hot from three, they could put pressure on the Bucks to rely more on outside shooting which will likely force them to go away from having Giannis attack the hoop.
Since both teams take good care of the ball and don’t often beat themselves, the slightest disruption to the opponent’s rhythm and gameplan could determine the outcome of the game.
Popular Player Props:
(These are the most popular props for the game as of this writing. They are not predictions or recommendations. We advise doing your own research before placing bets on any props mentioned.)
- Mike Conley, G UTA: Over 2.5 rebounds (-165)
- Conley has gone over this total in seven of his last ten games and three of his last five. However, it’s important to note that the two games recently that Conley hasn’t hit this were blowouts where he saw fewer minutes than normal. With this game unlikely to be a blow-out, he seems a safer bet to cash this prop.
- Rudy Gobert, C UTA: Under 1.5 assists (-215)
- Gobert is not Nikola Jokic. He’s only hit this total twice in his last ten games and hasn’t hit it at all in his past seven. Given that we covered Milwaukee’s weakness is on the perimeter, it’s fair to wonder if Utah even tries to play through Gobert, especially if he’s not 100%
- Jrue Holiday, G MIL: Over 1.5 3PT made (-190)
- Holiday has hit this in six of his last ten games and three of his last five. We did cover that Utah is a strong defensive team on the perimeter, but we also know that Milwaukee likes to shoot the three and Holiday is currently their best shooter. Considering they may need to be hitting from outside in order to win, the odds seem to suggest Holiday gets here on volume.