NBA Basketball: Indiana Pacers VS Milwaukee Bucks Pick and Predictions 03/16/2023

by James Q

Thursday, Mar 16, 2023

NBA Basketball: Indiana Pacers VS Milwaukee Bucks Pick and Predictions 03/16/2023

Game: 8:10 PM ET,  Thursday, March 16th, 2023
Venue: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
TV:  NBA League Pass
Season Record
Pacers: 31-38, 12th place Eastern Conference
Bucks: 50-19, 1st place Eastern Conference

Opening NBA odds at USA Sportsbooks

BetMGM:  Point Spread: Bucks -12.5, O/U 237.5
PointsBet: Point Spread: Bucks -12.5, O/U 239
Fanduel: Point Spread:  Bucks -12.5, O/U 239

Starting Five:

Pacers: PG Tyrese Haliburton (DD), SG Andrew Nembhard, SF Buddy Hield (DD), PF Aaron Nesmith, C Myles Turner (DD)

Bucks: PG Jrue Holiday, SG Joe Ingles, SF Khris Middelton, PF Giannis Antetokounmpo, C Brook Lopez (DD)

An Eastern Conference matchup that is decidedly unfair.  The Indiana Pacers have the best young backcourt rotation in the NBA.. not the best young backcourt that would be OKC.. but really the best rotation.. With PG Tyrese Haliburton, SG/PG Andrew Nembhard, and SG Ben Mathurin who looks a lot like a young Dobnovan Mitchell with his scoring prowess… but the Pacers have no quality forwards and hardly any forwards on the roster at all… instead they have like 6 more guards… However the Pacers have 3 starters listed as Day to Day and 3 bench players listed as OUT.. They are firmly in the “Tanking” mode as they can taste the possibility of winning a top-three pick in the NBA draft lottery.  The Milwaukee Bucks are the cream of the Eastern Conference with the best player (PF Giannis Antetokounmpo) and very elite level of depth. The Bucks are designed to win now and they are doing it.  The great betting opportunity here would normally go to the underdog because of the 12.5 point spread… but that is normally.  Very rarely will a near last place team cover a big spread against the first place team when they list 6 of the top 9 players as possibly NOT playing.

The Indiana Pacers have won 6 of their last 10 games and it is starting to cause headaches in the front office.  They went 7-3 ATS during that stretch.  The astounding number of guys that suddenly got placed on the injury report indicates that the team will not let the “team” screw up the ping pong balls any further.  They are waving the white flag on the rest of the season.  They lost their last game to the Detroit Pistons (Ha! Its working) 117-97. In the loss they got 5 players to score in double figures…. But meaninglessly.. They also got Zero minutes out of Haliburton or Turner or Mathurin… literally the three best players are no longer playing on a bad team.

The Milwaukee Bucks have won 8 of their last 10 games. Going 6-4 ATS during that stretch.  They won their last game against the Phoenix Suns 116-104…  while getting 36 points, 11 rebounds, and 8 assists from PF Giannis Antetokounmpo.  That guy is the best everyone knows it.  They also had 21 points & 10 rebounds from C Brook Lopez.  Brook is often mentioned 4th or 5th in discussion about the Bucks… but he is a secret good weapon.  His former multiple all-star seasons followed by a ton of experience… He tends to go about his business while playing winning basketball next to Giannis.

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Indiana Pacers VS Milwaukee Bucks Prediction

Our prediction for Thursday, March 16th is…. Bucks 132 - Pacers 100

Big time blow out coming.  The Pacers do not have forwards to start with AND will be sitting several of the quality guards they rely on.. What exactly will take the court?

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NBA Betting Trends

The Bucks are 7-2 ATS versus the Pacers the last 3 seasons.
The Bucks are 4-1 ATS versus Indiana in Milwaukee the last 3 seasons.

Players To Watch

Pacers: PG/SG Andrew Nembhard.  The Gonzaga product has been used as a starter all season in order to properly develop SG Be Mathurin off the bench.  Next season Ben will start and Andrew will sit.  He was an early second round pick rookie that made good… and he will be included in trade offers if sweetener is needed.  But if he remains on the Pacers he will be an important piece because of his size and defensive abilities.

Bucks: PF Giannis.  Why would you watch a Bucks game and NOT focus on Giannis.  Giannis is Bucks basketball.  Giannis will do everything as usual and probably sit early after building a big lead.  The guy is so special we would need a more rare animal than unicorn to compare him to.


Pacers: Rick “dust off that resume” Carlysle
Bucks: Mike “Buddy” Budenholzer

James Q

About the Author:

James Q. has been involved with sports and gambling his entire life. A former division 1 scholarship basketball player, James understands sports (and especially basketball) inside-and-out. Following his basketball playing days, James parlayed his gambling skills into a semi-pro poker career. James resides in Los Angeles, and especially loves the Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Rams, and Los Angeles Dodgers. And when he isn't betting on sports (and writing about it), James can be found performing stand-up comedy on the Sunset Strip.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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