The NBA Conference Semifinals continue to give basketball fans and gamblers more than they bargained for. Most of the action was on the LA Clippers mounting an underdog comeback in Game 2 against the Utah Jazz, but that didn’t happen. On the other side, the Brooklyn Nets were favored to take down the Milwaukee Bucks once again. The Bucks had something else in mind. These teams will now take a break, giving four other squads a chance to show off. Tonight’s two games are likely make-or-break points for two teams in particular.
Clippers Can’t Find Their Mojo
The Clippers simply can’t get their act together. They continue to play sloppy ball and aren’t organized on the court. It doesn’t help that Donovan Mitchell of the Jazz continues to put stellar performances, adding 37 points and going 50% from beyond the paint last night. The Clippers are now down 2-0, a precarious place to be, but they continue to lose by just a few points. There’s still time to turn things around and it’s obvious that they will have to do a better job at controlling Mitchell. Even when they were pressuring him last night, he still managed to figure out how to get around defenders to score or put up the assist.
The Bucks just squeezed out a very important win last night against the Nets, and it wasn’t all because of Giannis Antetokounmpo. Milwaukee is now 2-1 in the series, mostly thanks to an outstanding performance by Khris Middleton. He had 35 points and 15 rebounds last night to give the Bucks a low-scoring 86-83 win and save them from going 0-3. That would have almost definitely sealed their fate in this semifinals round. Antetokounmpo definitely wasn’t out of the picture, as he put up 33 points. But it was Middleton who kept the Nets from capitalizing after they tied the score at 76 with just three minutes left in the game.
Sixers And Hawks Meet Again
The Philadelphia 76ers face the Atlanta Hawks in their Game 3 matchup tonight, and both are looking for the go-ahead win. The series is currently tied at one apiece, and this is definitely going to be another tight battle. The Hawks are now going to host the next two games and, although the Sixers are the number-one seed in the Eastern Conference, the Hawks are ready to rally.
Philly might be without Joel Embiid tonight, listed as questionable due to knee issues. That could cause problems for the team, but the Hawks are in slightly worse shape. They are without De’Andre Hunter and Cam Reddish, whose absences are definitely going to be felt. That’s part of the reason the Sixers are one-point favorites to win and are getting -120 on the line. The Over/Under is at 224.5 and, like most recent games, the Under is likely to hit.
Suns Shine In Denver
The Phoenix Suns and the Denver Nuggets meet for their third time in the best-of-seven competition with the Suns up by two games. As the teams prepare to play in Denver, though, the pendulum might begin to swing in the opposite direction. The Nugs have home court advantage and are taking on a team that, although winning, hasn’t been overwhelmingly superior. The only advantage the Suns have tonight is that the Nuggets are playing with an injured Jamal Murray, which has already hurt the team this series.
For the first time in a while, the Suns are not the favorites to win tonight. The Nuggets are at -124 against the Suns’ +106, but the spread is just 1.5 (-110). This is going to be a very close game, but the underdogs, not reporting any injuries for tonight, are likely to advance to 3-0. The Over/Under is at 223.5 (-110), which is achievable by these two teams, but not tonight.