Run it Back, Game 2 Finals Odds Near Duplicate of Game 1

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Updated July 8, 8:10 a.m.

With a convincing Game 1 victory in their first NBA Finals appearance since 1993, the Phoenix Suns’ 118-105 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday has given The Valley a 1-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. Even with the 2019-2020 MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo, back in the Bucks starting lineup, they couldn’t keep up with the summer heat brought by the Suns.

Adjustments are bound to be made by both teams ahead of Game 2 on Thursday night and the Sportsbooks are making some interesting changes or lack-there-of.

The Spread

Milwaukee Bucks: +5.0 (-110) | Moneyline: +175

Phoenix Suns: -5.0 (-110) | Moneyline: -200

Well, well, well, here we go again. Many sportsbooks opened with an identical spread from Game 1 and slight variation in the Moneyline. Now with the game looming just hours away, the Suns lose half a point to the Bucks. Besides those minuscule details, the Suns enter Game 2 of the NBA Finals as 5.0-point favorites.

The disappointment of Milwaukee bettors continues on the road, falling to just 19-27 this season against the spread as the visiting team with their Game 1 loss on Tuesday. Overall this postseason, the Bucks have now fallen to 10-8 against the spread. But there is an added wrinkle in Game 2 for the Bucks. Following a loss this postseason, the Bucks are 3-2 against the spread with their only losses coming against the Brooklyn Nets.

It has been a great year against the spread for Phoenix, now sitting at 54-34-1 this year. While the Suns only went 3-3 against the spread against the Los Angeles Clippers, Phoenix has done well in the postseason with a record of 12-5 against the spread.

Over/Under

220.5 total points (-110)

Once again, oddsmakers opened by matching the Game 1 odds with the Over/Under at 219.5. Once game day came around, the books made a slight change at William Hill to 220.5. The Suns and Bucks only faced each other twice in the regular season and both matches were only decided by one point. The first game was on February 10 and combined for 249 points in regulation. The second meeting on April 19 went to overtime and combined for 255 points.

This duo hit the OVER in Game 1 (set at 219.5 total points) with a score of  118-105 (223 total points). While the Game 1 total falls far short of their regular-season meetings, it wasn’t a surprise that Game 1 hit the OVER. Now, oddsmakers might try to throw a curveball, making bettors seem comfortable with a repeat OVER bet, while adjustments will be made defensively by both teams and could bring the point total down considerably.

The Bucks have averaged 107 ppg on the road this postseason while the Suns have also averaged 107 at home. Those averages for both teams fall short of the 220.5 OVER/UNDER but Game 1 showed they certainly can surpass that mark.

Futures

A near-double-double in his NBA Finals debut has placed Chris Paul as a runaway Finals MVP favorite according to William Hill Sportsbook. With 32 points, 9 assists, and 4 rebounds in Tuesday’s opening game, Paul is now a -220 favorite with Devin Booker and Giannis Antetokounmpo falling in behind at +450.

And even though the Suns opened as the Finals’ favorite, odds continue to slide towards Phoenix’s favor. The Valley is now a -340 favorite to the Bucks’ +270.

 

Game 2 of the NBA Finals stays in Phoenix on Thursday, July 8. You can tune in on your local ABC channel beginning at 6:00 p.m. Arizona time.

Arizona native, Devon Henry, joined the Sports360AZ crew in 2018 after graduating from Arizona State's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communication. Devon has avidly partaken in coverage of the Arizona high school sports scene since 2013 and has covered NASCAR and INDYCAR at Phoenix Raceway since 2017. Devon is also a play-by-play announcer, calling over a dozen different sports and hundreds of events.