NBA Eastern Conference Finals Odds: Hawks vs Bucks Tips & Picks
The Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks each knocked off higher-seeded teams on the road in Game 7 thrillers. Now they face off with a trip to the NBA Finals in the balance.
The Bucks host the Hawks for Game 1 of the 2021 Eastern Conference Finals on Wednesday, featuring two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo against budding NBA star Trae Young. The Bucks are overwhelming favorites to advance to the Finals at NBA betting sites.
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Hawks vs. Bucks Eastern Conference Finals Odds
|To Win Series||Hawks +350; Bucks -480|
|Total Games Played||Over 5.5 -114; Under 5.5 -114|
|To Win 4-0||Hawks +4000; Bucks +330|
|To Win 4-1||Hawks +2000; Bucks +230|
|To Win 4-2||Hawks +1000; Bucks +400|
|To Win 4-3||Hawks +1000; Bucks +500|
Odds via DraftKings and current as of publication.
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Hawks vs. Bucks Betting Tips
Regular Season Feelings:The Bucks took 2 of 3 from the Hawks in the regular season, but Young didn’t play in two of those games. Only one of the three showcased both teams at full strength – the Bucks won that one, 120-109 on April 25, and Giannis played just 24 minutes in his first game back after missing six (knee).
Take The Over On Forwards: When Giannis played minutes, he produced. The Freak was consistent vs. Atlanta otherwise, scoring 27 and 31 points, grabbing 14 rebounds in both and dishing 8-4 assist lines.
He wasn’t the only flourishing forward. Bogdan Bogdanovic feasted on the Bucks, scoring 28 and 32 points in two matchups. Bogdanovic has seen his minutes go down with Kevin Huerter’s increased role, and his numbers have plummeted. He has failed to score more than seven points the last three games. If his points totals hover in that area in nightly NBA odds, the Over might be a good grab. Milwaukee’s defense ranked 27th in production allowed to small forwards this season.
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Road Warriors: The Hawks are 31-14 since Nate McMillan took over head coaching duties. This isn’t a typical upstart No. 5 seed. More impressive, they have done much of their best work on the road, going 5-2 in the NBA Playoffs against two of the league’s better home teams this season, the Knicks and 76ers. The Bucks were 26-11 at home in the regular season but are a perfect 5-0 in the playoffs.
PG Battle Prior to Huerter’s breakout 27-point Game 7 vs. Philly, Young led the Hawks in scoring in every postseason game to that point. But that was due more to quantity of shots over quality – Young averages 29.1 ppg on just 41.3% shooting, including 33% on 3’s. Jrue Holiday is one of the premier perimeter defenders – he successfully limited James Harden and was on Kevin Durant in the final seconds of the Game 7 win over the Nets.
Young had just 15 points on 3-of-17 shooting when he and Holiday squared off on April 15. Conversely, Holiday went for 23 points, four rebounds and seven assists in Milwaukee's win. Atlanta has six players averaging 10-14 ppg in the postseason. Look for good Overs when checking out betting lines at top sportsbooks to back there instead.
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The Hawks might have a depth advantage, and few teams are playing as well right now. Young has proven himself to be an elite playmaker, but this is not a good matchup for him. Conversely, a healthy Giannis is a nightmare for the Hawks. One could also make the argument that this is Giannis’ time.
The upstart Hawks are a team built for the future. The Bucks are built for right now, and with battle-tested veterans now in their prime. As much as I love the Hawks – I took them at +144 to get past the 76ers – there’s no way I’m fading Giannis and Khris Middleton right now.
There isn’t a ton of value in Bucks -480. Milwaukee to win 4-2 at FanDuel sportsbook offers better bang for the buck.
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NBA Eastern Conference Finals Schedule & TV Information
All games on TNT and at 8:30 p.m. ET
Game 1: Wednesday at Bucks
Game 2: Friday at Bucks
Game 3: Sunday at Hawks
Game 4: Tuesday, June 29 at Hawks
Game 5*: Thursday, July 1 at Bucks
Game 6*: Saturday, July 3 at Hawks
Game 7*: Monday, July 5 at Bucks