Nets vs. Bucks NBA expert prediction and odds for Thursday, March 21 (Back the Bucks against the lowly Nets)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Nets-Bucks. 

Mar 17, 2024; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks guard Damian Lillard (0) puts up a shot.
Mar 17, 2024; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks guard Damian Lillard (0) puts up a shot. / Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee is coming off a road loss (though it covered) to the No. 1 Boston Celtics at TD Garden on Wednesday without its best player. The Bucks have a quick turnaround and will be nearly a double-digit favorite at Fiserv Forum Thursday night against the struggling Brooklyn Nets. Milwaukee has been great at home since the All-Star Break as they look to round into form and play their best basketball over the final stretch of the regular season.

The Nets have done the opposite of that having lost four consecutive games and seven of nine overall. Brooklyn is coming off a drubbing at home by the Pelicans. Can they hang within the big number on the road to start a four-game road trip? Here’s the betting preview of the conference clash with a best bet. 

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Nets vs. Bucks odds, spread and total

Nets vs. Bucks how to watch

  • Date: Thursday, March 21 
  • Game time: 8 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Fiserv Forum
  • How to watch (TV): Bally Sports
  • Nets record: 26-43
  • Bucks record: 44-25

Nets vs. Bucks injury report

Brooklyn Nets

  • Dorian Finney-Smith (ankle): out
  • Nic Claxton (illness): questionable

Milwaukee Bucks

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (hamstring): questionable 

Nets vs. Bucks key players to watch

Brooklyn Nets

Cam Thomas: A bright spot for the struggling Nets, which are 4.5 games back of the final play-in spot in the Eastern Conference, Thomas is averaging 21.5 points per game this season. He’s averaged 26.5 points per game in March and has eclipsed 20 points in all six games this month since returning from injury. Thomas has struggled shooting from behind the arc, though, going 7-of-25 from downtown over the last four contests. 

Milwaukee Bucks

Bobby Portis: With Giannis Antetokounmpo sidelined over the last two games, Portis has been great on both sides of the ball. The veteran and former first-round pick has combined for 55 points on 24-of-40 shooting in the last two games with a double-double each night (25 total rebounds). 

Nets vs. Bucks prediction and pick

There’s no place like home for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Since the All-Star Break, Milwaukee has only played at home four times. In those four games, the Bucks are 4-0 straight up and 4-0 ATS, with three of those covers as a favorite. The Bucks are on the second half of a back-to-back, a spot they’ve been comfortable in this season with a 10-7 ATS record with a rest disadvantage (6-5 ATS with no rest overall).

They’ll face a Brooklyn squad that has been one of the most dreadful squads in the league on the road this season. The Nets are 9-16 ATS this season (third-worst in the NBA) as a road underdog and have the worst ATS mark in the league (11-22) overall on the road. 

The Nets’ offense has been bad regardless of venue, ranking 25th in the NBA in scoring. Meanwhile, Milwaukee feeds off the Fiserv Forum Faithful, scoring over five points more per game at home (123.2) than on the road, which ranks second in the NBA. 

Even if the Greek Freak can’t go, Milwaukee can take advantage on the perimeter. Brooklyn’s defense is respectable, but the Nets struggle to contain 3-point shots, ranking 26th in the NBA against triples. Milwaukee’s offense uses momentous triples to pull away from opponents, ranking No. 2 in home 3-point shooting, connecting at a 39.5% clip. Milwaukee bounces back from a close call in Boston by crushing the lowly Nets. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.