Fiserv Forum is the center of the NBA world on Thursday as the Milwaukee Bucks host the Boston Celtics in a matchup between the top two teams in the Eastern Conference. Milwaukee is 30-7 at home this season, with Boston entering at 52-24 overall and 24-15 on the road. The Bucks are playing on the second night of a back-to-back, but they list all of their regulars as being available. Robert Williams III (knee) and Grant Williams (illness) are questionable for the Celtics.
Caesars Sportsbook lists Milwaukee as a 2.5-point favorite, and tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the over/under, is 237 in the latest Celtics vs. Bucks odds. Before making any Bucks vs. Celtics picks, you'll want to see the NBA predictions and betting advice from the proven computer model at SportsLine.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times and has returned well over $10,000 in profit for $100 players on its top-rated NBA picks over the past four-plus seasons. The model enters Week 24 of the 2022-23 NBA season a stunning 70-36 on all top-rated NBA picks this season, returning more than $2,900. Anyone following it has seen huge returns.
Now, the model has set its sights on Celtics vs. Bucks and just locked in its picks and NBA predictions. You can visit SportsLine now to see the model's picks. Here are the NBA lines and trends for Bucks vs. Celtics:
- Celtics vs. Bucks spread: Bucks -2.5
- Celtics vs. Bucks over/under: 237 points
- Celtics vs. Bucks money line: Bucks -135, Celtics +115
- BOS: The Celtics are 20-19 against the spread in road games
- MIL: The Bucks are 9-1-1 against the spread with no rest
- Celtics vs. Bucks picks: See picks at SportsLine
Why the Celtics can cover
In addition to a top-flight offense, Boston's defensive foundation is strong. The Celtics are in the top five of the NBA in defensive rating, giving up 110.9 points per 100 possessions this season. Boston leads the league in defensive rebound rate (74.9%) while yielding only 12.5 second-chance points per game, and opponents average only 23.2 assists per contest against the Celtics.
Boston is in the top five in opponent field goal percentage (46.5%) and free throw prevention (21.5 attempts allowed per game), with top-10 marks in fast break points allowed (13.1 per game) and points allowed in the paint (48.6 per game). The Celtics are also tremendous on the road, posting a 24-15 record and a top-three net rating (+2.4) away from TD Garden. With Milwaukee also arriving on the second night of a back-to-back with travel, Boston boasts a rest advantage to go along with its notably impressive statistical profile.
Why the Bucks can cover
Milwaukee is excellent at home and excellent on defense. The Bucks are out-scoring opponents by 7.8 points per 100 possessions at Fiserv Forum this season, and Milwaukee is 30-7 in home games. Milwaukee is also in the top three of the league in defensive efficiency, yielding only 1.10 points per possession. The Bucks are in the top three of the league in field goal percentage allowed (45%) with the No. 1 mark in the league in 2-point percentage allowed (51%).
Milwaukee gives up fewer than 22 free throw attempts per game, and the Bucks are in the top five in assist prevention and defensive rebound rate. Opponents score fewer than 13 fast break points per game against Milwaukee and, on the other end, the Bucks put pressure on opponents from long distance. The Bucks are in the top five of the NBA in 3-pointers, making more than 14 per game, and Milwaukee also has above-average marks in offensive rebound rate and second-chance points.
How to make Bucks vs. Celtics picks
The model is leaning Over on the total, with six players projected to score over 16 points. The model also says one side of the spread hits almost 60% of the time. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Celtics vs. Bucks? And which side of the spread hits almost 60% of the time? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the spread you need to jump on, all from the model that has crushed its NBA picks, and find out.