With the playoffs in full swing, we’ve got two NBA picks for Friday night’s fixtures in basketball’s premier competition and are chasing a 9.55 double.
Bucks to beat Celtics by 6-10 points @ 5.0
Milwaukee lead the series 3-2 and will be determined to wrap things up with home-court advantage, rather than have to head to Boston on Sunday for a winner-takes-all decider.
The Bucks delivered a crushing psychological blow when overcoming a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit to stun the Celtics 110-107 on the road in Game 5 and it is hard to see Boston recovering.
Talismanic forward Giannis Antetokounmpo posted 40 points and 11 rebounds at TD Garden but even he was upstaged by guard Jrue Holiday, who added some late defensive heroics to his 24 points.
“We just always play with that confidence, that there’s going to be time left,” declared Holiday. “And if we take care of business, we’ll always give ourselves a chance.”
Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer summed it up when stating: “He’s a winner – Jrue Holiday’s a winner. You ask any player in this league, any coach in this league, he’s a winner.”
Milwaukee can take that momentum into tonight’s contest and are backed to kick on and book a date with Miami in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Warriors -8.5 points vs Grizzlies @ 1.91
Golden State simply failed to turn up when suffering a 134-95 drubbing in Memphis on Wednesday but still lead the series 3-2 and should be back to full focus for Game 6 in San Francisco.
Injured Grizzlies star Ja Morant sent the FedExForum fans wild by chanting “Grizz in seven” at the end of their last encounter, but the Warriors’ coaching staff may just use that to help fire up a response.
Guard Klay Thompson admitted: “It was awful. It was embarrassing. From the opening tip, they had great flow and they were more aggressive than us.
“We all had the mindset that we were going to close it out, but sometimes basketball isn’t an exact science and we played like a shell of ourselves.”
However, Thompson, Stephen Curry and Draymond Green have all been around the block enough times not to let the stink of one poor performance linger and we’re expecting a different story back at Chase Center.
Thompson added: “It doesn’t feel good losing by as much as we did, but in a day, it’s just a loss. You flush it from your mental and you remind yourself who you are. And we’re going to play with a 100 per cent effort on Friday. I like our chances.”
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