Jayson Tatum

The 2021 NBA Playoffs continue on Thursday evening with an intriguing second-round Eastern Conference matchup. The Brooklyn Nets visit the Milwaukee Bucks for Game 3, with the Nets leading 2-0 in the series. Milwaukee aims to rebound from a lopsided 125-86 Game 2 loss in what is a virtual must-win scenario. James Harden (hamstring) and Jeff Green (foot) are out for Brooklyn in Game 3, with Donte DiVincenzo (ankle) out for Milwaukee.

Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. ET at Fiserv Forum. The latest Nets vs. Bucks odds from William Hill Sportsbook list Milwaukee as a 3.5-point favorite. The over-under for total points is set at 234. Before finalizing any Bucks vs. Nets picks see the NBA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine's proven model

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times and has returned over $9,100 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks over the past two-plus seasons. The model is up almost $900 on its top-rated picks this season and entered the conference semifinals of the 2021 NBA Playoffs on a stunning 100-66 roll on top-rated NBA picks against the spread dating back to last season. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.

Now, the model has set its sights on the Nets vs. Bucks in the 2021 NBA Playoff bracket. You can head to SportsLine to see its picks. Now, here are several NBA betting lines and trends for Bucks vs. Nets:

  • Nets vs. Bucks spread: Bucks -3.5
  • Nets vs. Bucks over-under: 233.5 points
  • Nets vs. Bucks money line: Bucks -155, Nets +135
  • Brooklyn: The Nets are 9-1 against the spread in the last 10 games 
  • Milwaukee: The Bucks are 4-6 against the spread in the last 10 games

Why the Nets can cover

Brooklyn is an offensive juggernaut, even when operating without a top-tier star in Harden. The Nets connected on 21 3-pointers in Game 2, leading by as many as 49 points, and they own the top offensive rating in the playoffs. Brooklyn is scoring more than 1.25 points per possession against postseason competition, and the Nets also lead the NBA Playoffs 2021 in true shooting percentage (62.8 percent). In addition to its elite-level shot creation, Brooklyn is producing 2.29 assists for every turnover in the playoffs, and the Nets led the league in regular season offensive efficiency, field-goal percentage and true shooting percentage. 

Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are both superstars, and both are playing at a high level. Durant is averaging 32.0 points on 55 percent shooting and 50 percent from 3-point range in the playoffs, with Irving adding 24.4 points on strong efficiency of his own. From there, Joe Harris is one of the best shooters in the NBA, connecting on 47.5 percent of his 3-point attempts in the regular season and upping that to an obscene 51 percent mark in the first seven playoff games.

Why the Bucks can cover

The first two games of the series couldn't have gone much worse for the Bucks. Still, Milwaukee is clearly better than what it showed in those matchups, and the Bucks return home for a fresh start. Giannis Antetokounmpo is one of the NBA's best players, averaging 28.1 points, 11.1 rebounds and 5.9 assists with high-end defense this season, and the Bucks also have star-caliber players in Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday

Milwaukee was a top-five offensive team in the NBA this season, scoring 116.5 points per 100 possessions, and Brooklyn can be vulnerable on the defensive side. The Bucks aren't likely to stop the Nets in full given Brooklyn's offensive weapons, but Milwaukee was a top-10 defensive team in the regular season, giving the Bucks optimism. From there, the Bucks swarmed to a league-leading defensive performance against Miami in the first round, and they have been better at home on the whole this season.

How to make Nets vs. Bucks picks

SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, projecting the teams to combine for 234 points. The model also says one side of the spread has all the value. You can only get this pick at SportsLine.

So who wins Nets vs. Bucks? And which side of the spread has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Nets vs. Bucks spread you need to jump on Thursday, all from the model that has crushed its NBA picks, and find out.