I was incorrect on my last Raptors prediction as the Raptors (+1.5) were crushed at home 110-89 versus the Hawks on Friday. I am now 14-13 in Raptors free predictions. Tonight the 26-14 Raptors travel to Milwaukee to take on the 21-19 Bucks.
(26-14) Toronto Raptors @ (21-19) Milwaukee Bucks
Probable starting line-ups:
Toronto – PG – Kyle Lowry SG – DeMar DeRozan C – Jonas Valanciunas SF – Greivis Vasquez PF – Amir Johnson
Milwaukee – Point Guard – Brandon Knight Shooting Guard – Khris Middleton C- Zaza Pachulia Small Forward – G. Antetokounmpo Power Forward – Johnny O’Bryant
Toronto – PPG – DeMar DeRozan 19.8 RPG – Jonas Valanciunas 8.4 APG – Kyle Lowry 7.7
Milwaukee – Points Per Game – Brandon Knight 18.2 Rebounds Per Game – Zaza Pachulia 6.6 Assists Per Game – Brandon Knight 5.1
Team Scoring: (with league ranking in parentheses)
Toronto – PF – 106.8 (5th) PA – 101.5 (21st)
Milwaukee – Points For (Per Game) – 98.5 (21st) Points Against (Per Game) – 97.3 (5th)
The Toronto Raptors have dropped 7 of their last 9 games. Yesterday they were defeated 95-93 at home versus New Orleans. Shooting guard DeMar DeRozan led the way with 22 points on 7 of 18 shooting in 36 minutes. Reserve shooting guard Louis Williams scored 17 points on 4 of 9 shooting in 21 minutes off the bench. Point guard Greivis Vasquez netted 16 points on 5 of 14 shooting in 28 minutes. He also dished out 9 assists. Power forward Amir Johnson had a double-double as he scored 14 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. He was 6 of 7 from the field in 32 minutes. Power forward Patrick Patterson chipped in with 10 points on 3 of 5 shooting in 24 minutes. The team shot 43.1% from the field, 28% from the 3 point line (7-25), and 82.8% from the free throw line (24-29). The Raptors were out-rebounded 41-37. They were out-scored by a total of 23 points in 3 of the 4 quarters, their one good quarter was the 3rd in which they out-scored the Pelicans 35-14 in the 3rd. Toronto is 10-7 on the road this season. Tonight is the 2nd game of a back to back. They are 5-3 in the 2nd game of a back to back so far this season. Tonight is also the start of a 3 game road trip. Their next game is Wednesday at Memphis.
The Milwaukee Bucks come in to tonight’s tip-off winners in 3 of their last 4 games. On Thursday they were victorious versus the Knicks 95-79 in a game played in London. Reserve shooting guard O.J. Mayo led the team in scoring with 22 points on 8 of 14 shooting in 24 minutes off the bench. Point guard Brandon Knight scored 20 points on 6 of 13 shooting in 35 minutes. He was also 6 of 6 from the free throw line. He also had 6 assists, 6 steals, and 5 rebounds. Small forward Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 16 points on 6 of 10 shooting in 33 minutes. He also had 5 rebounds. Shooting guard Khris Middleton netted 14 points on 4 of 9 shooting in 33 minutes. He also had 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 steals. Center Zaza Pachulia had a double-double with 11 points and 14 rebounds. He also had 5 assists. He was 7 of 8 from the foul line. The team shot 38.9% from the field, 44.4% from the 3 point line (8-18), and 73.8% from the free throw line (31-42). The Bucks out-rebounded the Knicks 44-36. The team opened up the game with a big quarter as they out-scored their opposition 31-13 in the 1st period. Milwaukee is 9-8 at home this season. Tonight is the 1st game of a 3 game home stand. Their next game is Thursday at home versus Utah.
In their first meeting this season on November 21st Toronto grabbed a 124-82 home win versus Milwaukee. After tonight the 2 teams play 1 more time this season, February 2nd at Toronto.
The Raptors are continuing to struggle even with the return of DeRozan but they’re going to go eventually get back on track. The Bucks are too up and down to be able to pick them right now. I like the Raptors in this one. Take the Raptors +1 (1.86) (Bet365)
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