The LA Clippers and the Milwaukee Bucks open Sunday’s NBA program with their clash in Wisconsin. The two big favorites to win their respective conferences and the Larry O’Brien trophy will meet for the first time this year. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George will attack the back-to-back NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, who is also NBA Defensive Player of the Year. The game takes place at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee, of course without spectators, which is a big minus for the Bucks.
Los Angeles Clippers (24-11, +115) have four wins and three defeats in the past seven games, subsequently losing and winning during this period. The latest match was in Memphis, which was the second of back-to-back battles with the Grizzlies. Following a massive loss in the first one, 122-94, the Clippers fully repaid, beating the hosts, 119-99.
They didn’t allow the Grizzlies to create a swing at any given point of the game. Also, the Clips’ tough defense limited Ja Morant and his crew to just 40.2% of shooting from the field, 32.1% for three. The defense is, in fact the difference-maker when talking about LAC, with them having at least five defenders who are among top 30 in the NBA.
Kawhi scored 30 points, Lou Williams had 17 off the bench, while Paul George and Nicola Batus dropped 13 each, the same as Terance Mann. Serge Ibaka and Patrick Beverly set the tone in defense, as they held the opponents under control. As the season goes by, we expect them to be even better, especially in the playoffs.
Milwaukee Bucks (20-13, -120) posted four wins in a row, with Giannis going 38,37 and 38 over the last three. New Orleans was Bucks’ most recent victim, 129-125, but we need to say that the guests from the Big Easy had a chance to avoid a defeat, but their indecisiveness ruined them that opportunity.
But to get back on the Bucks. Giannis dropped 38 with 10 boards, with Khris Middleton being the one who was in the shadow, but having the bigger impact on the game. The All-Star forward scored 31 points, with seven rebounds and six assists.
Special praises go to Donte Divincenzo, who had 24 buckets and nine rebounds. Over the past three games, he’s been averaging 17.6 points and 6.3 boards. Even though he isn’t the same type of player, his scoring is partially covering Jrue Holiday’s absence. Though, we need to say that the Bucks severely need their starting point guard back, because it is obvious that they can’t function with him properly.
Head to Head Games
The franchise from Milwaukee won both matches last year, 129-124 in LA, and 119-91 at Fiserv Forum.
The line for the total number of points is set at 237, and knowing Milwaukee’s offensive mentality at home, Over is pretty realistic here. Regardless of the opponent, the Bucks are usually scoring 120 or more points. Now, keeping in mind that they have equally lethal Clippers across the court, the above-mentioned like is an easy target. Do remember that the Clips, too, had some unreal offensive performances.
Pick: Over 237 points
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.