Celtics vs. Bucks NBA expert prediction, pick and odds for Tuesday, April 9 (Take the under)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Celtics-Bucks. 
Apr 7, 2024; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Bobby Portis (9) grabs a rebound against the Knicks.
Apr 7, 2024; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Bobby Portis (9) grabs a rebound against the Knicks. / Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee has hit a slump at the worst possible time. The Bucks were dubiously one of the NBA’s top stories last week after losing three consecutive games as a double-digit favorite, followed by a 122-109 defeat at home to the New York Knicks.

Desperate for a bounce-back win, the Bucks are two-point underdogs Tuesday at home against the top-seeded Boston Celtics. Milwaukee is in danger of losing the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference (one-game lead over the No. 3 Orlando Magic) while Boston wrapped up the No. 1 seed in the east last week.

Here’s the betting breakdown of the matchup with a best bet. 

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Celtics vs. Bucks odds, spread and total

Celtics vs. Bucks how to watch

  • Date: Tuesday, April 9
  • Game time: 7:30 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Fiserv Forum 
  • How to watch (TV): TNT
  • Celtics record: 62-16
  • Bucks record: 47-31

Celtics vs. Bucks injury report

Boston Celtics

  • Al Horford (toe): questionable
  • Kristaps Porzingis (hamstring): questionable

Milwaukee Bucks

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (hamstring): questionable
  • Marjon Beauchamp (ankle): out
  • Patrick Beverley (ankle): probable
  • Jaylin Galloway (ankle): out
  • Khris Middleton (quad): probable

Celtics vs. Bucks key players to watch

Boston Celtics

Jaylen Brown: The veteran guard and former No. 3 overall pick is now shooting over 50% from the field this season and has combined for 49 points in his first two games of April. In Sunday’s win over Portland, Brown went 10-of-17 from the field for 26 points. He’s drained three 3-pointers in three consecutive games, as well. 

Milwaukee Bucks

Bobby Portis: The veteran forward has combined for 62 points over the last three games on 26-of-49 shooting. Portis had a 19-point, 10-rebound double-double in Friday’s loss to Toronto, then followed that performance with 24 points off the bench in Sunday’s loss to the Knicks. 

Celtics vs. Bucks prediction and pick

Milwaukee’s defense has been poor over its four-game losing streak and hit a low point in Sunday’s loss to New York, when it allowed the Knicks to shoot 48.9% from the field and 48.3% from downtown in a 13-point defeat. 

A visit from the Boston Celtics is not the remedy to fix a struggling defense. Boston had its lull recently with a two-game losing streak to Atlanta in late-March, but the Celtics have recovered since, winning five straight and putting up 118-plus points three times. 

Can Milwaukee’s defense get things fixed? One guiding light could be on the perimeter. Boston shoots more 3-pointers than any team in the NBA (42.5 per game) and Milwaukee is 10th in the league in defending triples. On the other side, Boston’s defense, No. 2 in the league in net rating, has traveled well this season, ranking No. 6 in road scoring. Unders have gone 22-17 at Fiserv Forum this season. Go below the total in this nationally-televised contest. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.