Now in a 2-0 hole after suffering a pair of double-digit road losses, Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks will be desperate to win Game 3 of the NBA Finals when they play host to Chris Paul and the Phoenix Suns on Sunday night.
Milwaukee is a value-packed home favorite seeing as how they were in games 1 and 2 before late runs by Phoenix put the Eastern Conference champions away. Will the Bucks take care of business at home or will the Suns pull off the upset to take a commanding 3-0 series lead?
Milwaukee Bucks at Phoenix Suns
When: Sunday, July 11, 2021, at 8 p.m. ET
Where: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, WI
Radio: ESPN Radio620 AM/103.3 FM WTMJ, KMVP 98.7 / S: KSUN
Phoenix Suns +4
Milwaukee Bucks -4
NBA Team Total Odds
Milwaukee Bucks 113
Suns Face Tall Task In Milwaukee
Devin Booker scored a team-high 31 points on Thursday to lead Phoenix to the win in Game 2 while Chris Paul added 23 points and 10 assists. Now, two wins away from winning the NBA title, Phoenix will look to pick up the big road win in Milwaukee. The Suns showed their versatility on one phenomenal 10-pass play that finished with a Deandre Ayton and-one.
“We actually talked about that play right after the game, me and Mikal (Bridges), and he was like, ‘I think that was the most pumped I’ve ever been after a play,'” Booker said. “And I was like, me too.”
Phoenix has won three straight playoff games and seven of nine, but the Suns will face a tall task against Milwaukee at Fiserv Forum with the Bucks sitting at 7-1 at home in the postseason.
Bucks Need Holiday, Middleton, To Show Up
Milwaukee was held to 105 and 108 points respectively in games 1 and 2, but I can see Milwaukee putting 114 points on the board at home in Game 3. The Bucks put at least 113 points on the board in two of their last three home games while scoring at least 123 points in two of those contests. Milwaukee led the league in scoring during the regular season and we should definitely see better outings from Khris Midleton and Jrue Holiday in particular after the pair was limited to 11 and 17 points respectively in Game 2 on Thursday night.
“Just keep talking to him, keep telling him to be aggressive,” Antetokounmpo said when asked what his message for Holiday would be heading into Game 3. “No matter what’s going on, you’ve got to stay aggressive and you cannot get in your feelings. It’s hard not to. You know, NBA Finals, 20,000 people booing you and all that, it’s kind of hard.”
Holiday is now 11-for-35 through the first two games of this series and has scored a combined 27 points.
“I know he’s (Holiday) going to be there when we need him the most and I don’t worry about it,” Antetokounmpo added. “He’s a great basketball player. He’s played great all year and he’s going to continue to play great for this team.”
I like the Bucks to top 113 points in Game 3 as Middleton and Holiday come up with big performances.
Pick: Milwaukee Over 113 Points
Giannis Gets The Help He Needs
I like Milwaukee to cover the chalk as a 4-point home favorite in Game 3, although I’m not necessarily predicting a rout by any means. The Suns lost games 3 and 5 against the LA Clippers by an identical 14 points and I expect Milwaukee to be focused from the outset on Sunday.
“I think we had a lot of open shots that we didn’t make,” Holiday said. “I know me personally, there were a couple layups there that I usually make that kind of rimmed in and out. Had some good looks.”
The Bucks are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 home games against a team with a winning road record and 4-1 ATS in their last five home games. A hard-fought 10-point win sounds about right to me for Phoenix in Game 3 despite the fact that Phoenix has gone 6-1 ATS in their last seven road games against a team with a winning home record.