2021 NBA Finals Game 1 – Picks, Predictions & Odds

We have betting picks and predictions for Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.

After months of play, the competition has been whittled down to two and it’s shaping up to be closely-contested series.

Phoenix got through the Clippers and the Bucks got past the Hawks. However, the status of Giannis Antetokounmpo is still up in the air.

We look at the best betting value for Game 1 at Phoenix Suns Arena.

NBA Finals Game 1 Betting Picks

Phoenix Suns vs Milwaukee Bucks Game 1 Preview

The biggest question surrounding the NBA Finals is whether Giannis Antetokounmpo will play, but he is unlikely to play on Wednesday.

Antetokounmpo is a big loss for the Bucks, not so much on the offensive end but on defence. He is one of the best paint defenders in the league and his absence won’t make it easy against the quality shooting of the Suns.

However, the Bucks showed they can win with him in the Eastern Conference Finals against Atlanta. They won the last two games 123-112 and 118-107 without Giannis, but Atlanta was particularly poor in the shooting department, so it made the Bucks look good.

Winning Game 1 on the road won’t be easy for the Bucks, who are only 20-16 away from home. They now play one of the best home teams and the Suns are supremely confident.

Phoenix has a home record of 27-9 and it looked good beating the Los Angeles Clippers in six games. The Clippers were largely without Kawhi Leonard, but the Suns were always in control of the series.

Chris Paul has made his first NBA Finals in his 16-year career and that’s a credit to his class. He could have signed with a ready-made team like the Lakers or Warriors, but he chose to join forces with the young and talented Suns.

Headlining the Suns offence is Devin Booker, who averaged 25.6 points. He can show immaturity at times, but he has settled down with Paul in the team. The same goes for De’Andre Ayton, who credits Paul to changing the course of his career.

The Suns have a balanced roster, and although they are undersized, that doesn’t stop them. The Bucks are more length but they have struggled to hit shots at times, especially on the road.

We give the shooting edge to the Suns, who will enjoy playing at home. It comes as no surprise to see bookmakers open the Suns at $1.35, which is about as short as you would want to take.

The current points spread is 6.5, so the game should come close to that number. We’re going with the Suns to come out blazing and produce the goods in the opening game.

Bet: Phoenix Suns –6.5 @ $1.90

Phoenix Suns vs Milwaukee Bucks Prop Bets

Sportsbet has a plethora of prop betting markets for the Suns vs Bucks Game 1 on Wednesday. We have looked through the best value options, so punters can enjoy a range of investments.

The At The Line promotion offers punters $4.50 for De’Andre Ayton to score Over 15.5 points, Phoenix cover a –5.5 spread and win the first quarter. We like this option and it should provide some interest, especially for the first quarter option.

Betting on the first basket can be a lottery, but it makes the first 30 seconds plenty of fun. We think Chris Paul will look to make an immediate impact, which would set the crowd in a frenzy.

Paul is $12 to score the first bucket, which is value we’re not prepared to give up.

An option NBA punters can add to their multis is De’Andre Ayton to score a double-double. He should score 10 points and we’re supremely confident he’ll grab at least 10 rebounds. The option pays only $1.45, but it looks like a safe bet.

Our last Game 1 prop is Devin Booker to score three or more three-pointers. He is deadly from the three when he’s feeling it, so the $2.25 odds are well worth taking.

The current favourite is Khris Middleton, but he can disappear in the playoffs and we have more trust in the Suns guard.

Daryl Curnow
About the Author: Daryl Curnow

After graduating from the University of Auckland (BA – English), Daryl was thrown into the world of sports and horse racing journalism.
Having worked as a racing journalist for two years, he decided to move into the online world of horse racing and sports writing. Coupled with his love of US sport, Daryl’s picks have been featured on various websites around the world and viewed by millions of readers. After years of honing his craft, Daryl became a professional punter in 2009 – with a focus on horse racing, NBA, NFL, and college sports. When he’s not working, Daryl tries to avoid making bogeys on the golf course.