After two thrilling Game 7’s on Sunday, the Conference Finals are set. Here are the predictions for every single game of the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, over the next week or so.
Eastern Conference: Bucks (1) vs. Raptors (2)
Game 1: Raptors at Bucks
The Milwaukee Bucks were out to a rough start against the Celtics in the semifinals and dropped the first game (and home court advantage) right off the bat. The Raptors do not have the defensive versatility of the Celtics to guard Giannis Antetokounmpo. Factor in the time Milwaukee has had to plan for Toronto, and you will have yourself a fairly decent blowout for the Bucks, as they will win this game by about 15 points.
MIL 1, TOR 0
Game 2: Raptors at Bucks
This game should be a little closer. Both teams had a game to feel each other out and Toronto is still a talented team capable of making adjustments. Expect the biggest adjustment being more of Serge Ibaka on Antetokounmpo, as the Raptors experiment with players to throw at him on the defensive side of the ball.
Ultimately, the home crowd will help push the Bucks to a Game 2 victory by about 5-8 points. MIL 2, TOR 0
Game 3: Bucks at Raptors
Home court for the Raptors will prove to be the difference here, as the Raptors play for the first time in their own building after Kawhi beat the buzzer against the 76ers. The building will be buzzing and the Raptors will be desperate for a win.
Raptors win by about 10. MIL 2, TOR 1
Game 4: Bucks at Raptors
I expect Game 4 to be the culmination of Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer’s brilliance. With Eric Bledsoe and George Hill locking down on Kyle Lowry, Middleton matching, or beating, Danny Green on the outside, and Giannis Antetokounmpo bullying Pascal Siakam, Serge Ibaka and Marc Gasol, the Bucks will look at Game 4 as a chance to effectively win the series.
Bucks by about five. MIL 3, TOR 1
Game 5: Raptors at Bucks
At this point in the series, Milwaukee will be tasting blood and will ultimately finish off the Raptors in a blowout game.
Bucks win the series 4-1