2023 NBA Picks: The Milwaukee Bucks Are Back, Baby

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: Apr 9, 2024 08:00 PM
2023 NBA Picks: The Milwaukee Bucks Are Back, Baby

For most of the 2022-23 NBA season, the Milwaukee Bucks have been a disappointment.

Sure, entering their Friday night tilt vs the Indiana Pacers, they rank third in the Eastern Conference. But Khris Middleton, Bobby Portis, Joe Ingles and Jrue Holiday have all missed time with injuries, and the Bucks still don't have an automatic fifth closer. To top it all off, two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo has seen his efficiency drop, and amid the revolving door of injuries, Milwaukee's offense hovers around the bottom 10 in points scored per possession.

This is enough uncertainty to send a tremor down the spine of the sports betting markets. And that's exactly what happened. The Bucks have seen their odds to win the 2023 NBA Finals take a noticeable hit over the first half of the season. And yet, this might be to your benefit. We would highly encourage you to take a look at the Milwaukee Bucks' odds to win the 2023 NBA championship, because they're probably undervalued at this point. Not everyone has caught on, but they are healthier. They might even be flat-out back.

Milwaukee has currently won four of their last five games. They will go for a fifth win in six tries, on the road, against the Indiana Pacers on Friday night. Here are the latest NBA online betting odds for this matchup, courtesy of the folks over at BetOnline:

Philadelphia Eagles-126+108Kansas City Chiefs

This is your usual reminder to double-check all online NBA betting odds before making your picks. Our Bucks vs. Pacers betting odds are accurate entering the morning of Friday, January 27. Linemakers will continue making shifts right up until opening tip-off on Friday at 7 p.m. EST. This game in particular could see larger swings than usual. Giannis is currently listed as questionable with a right knee injury and could feasibly be a last-minute scratch.

Of course, you needn't worry about getting the latest NBA betting odds if you sign up for an account with the right website. Fortunately, this is why our reviews of the top online sportsbook exist. We want to help you find the best online NBA betting sites on the market.

Are the Milwaukee Bucks officially back? Or could this on-the-road matchup against the Indiana Pacers be a trap game? Read on to see our predictions for Pacers vs. Bucks

Even with Giannis Antetoukounmpo Recovering from a Right Knee Injury, the Bucks Should Edge Out the Pacers

The Milwaukee Bucks moneyline implies that bettors believe Giannis Antetokounmpo will play. We tend to agree. Teams are always liable to rest stars when they're on the road, but the Bucks aren't playing either end of a back-to-back, and they were at home for their last game, so Indiana was just a short flight away.

Let's say Giannis doesn't play, though. Or that he's limited. Whatever. Indiana is still battling the injury bug. Tyrese Haliburton doesn't have a timetable for his return, and there's a chance Myles Turner winds up sitting out on Friday night, as well.

Playing at home means something. But the Pacers just don't have the top-end talent to compete with the Bucks even if Giannis sits. That's the benefit of having Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton in Milwaukee.

OSB Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks (-330)

Milwaukee Bucks To beat the Indiana Pacers

There's No Use Following Point Spread Betting Trends for Milwaukee and Indiana

Below you can see the latest NBA point spread betting odds for the Bucks vs. Pacers game on Friday night:

  • Milwaukee Bucks, -8 (-108)
  • Indiana Pacers, +8 (-112)

This feels like a no-brainer at first glance. The Indiana Pacers have covered the spread 64 percent of the time when playing at home–the third best mark in the NBA. They have also covered the spread 68.8 percent of the time as the home underdog. The Milwaukee Bucks, meanwhile, are covering the spread less than 43 percent of the time on the road.

Throw all of that out of the window.

The Pacers will remain without Tyrese Haliburton, their best player. They are 1-7 since he went down with knee and elbow issues. And the Bucks have seldom played with all three of Giannis, Holiday and Middleton. Barring a last-minute change, all three will be available Friday night. Milwaukee has also covered 50 percent of their games on the road when they're the favorite, and that's while factoring in all their shorthanded performances.

Framed that way, an eight-point cover doesn't seem so unlikely.

OSB Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks, -8 (-110)

Milwaukee Bucks To cover the point spread against the Indiana Pacers

Should You Bet the "Over" on the Pacers-Bucks Game or Is It a Trap?

Here are the latest NBA over/under betting odds for the Pacers vs. Bucks game on Friday night:

  • Over 237.5 (-110)
  • Under 237.5 (-110)

Linemakers seem to be overcompensating for both Haliburton's absence and the Bucks' struggling offense. In a vacuum, that's not unfair. The Pacers have not been efficient without Haliburton. But they still look to get out and run, and they continue to launch a ton of threes. That's a very "over" friendly style.

Milwaukee's offense has also been worlds better when Middleton, Holiday and Giannis all share the floor. They just hung 150 points on the Detroit Pistons for crying out loud. Coming off two days rest, with almost a fully healthy squad available, they should be able to torch a fragile Pacers defense. We think there's a chance this final score clears 250.

OSB Prediction: Over 237.5 (-110)

Bucks and Pacers To score over 237.5 points combined

Take a look at this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can decide which one to use for all of your NBA betting:

Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan Favale leverages over 12 years of sports journalism expertise in his role as New York staff writer. He provides in-depth analysis across the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, tennis, NASCAR, college basketball, and sports betting. Dan co-hosts the popular Hardwood Knocks NBA podc...

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