Expert Cappers Picks
National Basketball Association
Preview
Denver at Milwaukee
When: 8:00 PM ET, Monday, November 19, 2018
Where: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The Milwaukee Bucks traded wins and losses over the last eight games following a 7-0 start and will try to jump above .500 on a six-game homestand when they host the Denver Nuggets on Monday. The Bucks fell to the Memphis Grizzlies to suffer their first home loss in the opener of the homestand on Wednesday but bounced back with a dominating second-half performance against the Chicago Bulls on Friday.

Milwaukee trailed the Bulls by 18 points going into the half but ended up with a 123-104 victory sparked by a 46-point third quarter. "I thought the competitive spirit, the competitiveness, the toughness, the energy, the effort, and the focus, all those things you have to have, were apparent in the third and fourth quarter," Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer told reporters. "Hopefully, as a group, we can think about what we want to do that from the start of the game to the end of the game. Give credit to the players, playing a half like they did." Milwaukee enjoyed a similarly explosive third quarter at Denver on Nov. 11, with center Brook Lopez draining six of his eight 3-pointers in the period to help spark Milwaukee to a 121-114 win. The Nuggets are enduring a rough stretch with losses in five of six and began the three-game road trip with a 125-115 loss at New Orleans on Saturday.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, Altitude (Denver), FS Wisconsin (Milwaukee)

ABOUT THE NUGGETS (10-6): Denver coach Michael Malone is looking for a consistent effort from his team and was not happy that the Nuggets appeared to be outworked by the Pelicans on Saturday. "Twenty-three second-chance points allowed," Malone told reporters. "We need our starters to rebound the basketball. And then you give up 20 fastbreak points. That's 43 points off of solely hustle, effort, getting back, finding a body giving them one shot, and we didn't have that tonight." Starting power forward Paul Millsap finished with one rebound on Saturday, marking the second time in three games that he managed one or no boards.

ABOUT THE BUCKS (11-4): Budenholzer is in his first season with the team after parting ways with the Atlanta Hawks over the summer but has already earned the respect of the players. "Coach came in and he let us know we weren't putting enough effort and energy into the game and we had no pace on offense - we were trying to do it ourselves," superstar forward Giannis Antetokounmpo told reporters of Budenholzer's halftime speech on Friday. "He was mad. He was really upset. But he believes in us, he trusts us. We don't have to have that type of half for us to pick it up. We have to be able to - from the first minute of the game - be able to set the tone and do what we do." Antetokounmpo finished with 23 points, 13 rebounds, four assists and three blocks in that win and is averaging 25.6 points on 55.8 percent shooting and 12.7 boards.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Nuggets PF Juan Hernangomez recorded his second career double-double - first this season - with 20 points and 11 rebounds on Saturday.

2. Bucks SF Khris Middleton is averaging 23 points on 25-of-43 shooting over the last three games.

3. Milwaukee SG Donte DiVincenzo (knee) sat out Friday and is not expected to play Monday.

PREDICTION: Bucks 126, Nuggets 120
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Denver 10-6 L1 7-3 3-3 0-0 10-6 1-0 6-4
Milwaukee 11-4 W1 7-1 4-3 1-1 10-3 2-0 7-1
Last Meeting
Denver Milwaukee
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
11/11/18 MIL 121 DEN 114 114 39 46.1 121 41 57.1
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Denver P. Millsap 25 42.9 8
Milwaukee B. Lopez 28 58.8 0
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Denver P. Millsap 8 3 5
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 9 0 9
Assists Player  
Denver M. Morris 10
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 8
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Denver N. Jokic 335 52.5 77
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 431 57.4 89
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Denver N. Jokic 183 44 139
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 213 40 173
Assists Player  
Denver N. Jokic 127
Milwaukee E. Bledsoe 103
Quickchart Matchup
Denver Denver Off vs  Milwaukee Milwaukee Defense
Denver Off vs Milwaukee - Points For 111.3 Points For
Denver Off vs Milwaukee - Points Against 109.7 Points Against
Denver - FG% 47.0 FG%
Milwaukee - FG% 43.3 FG%
Denver - Reb 46.9 Reb
Milwaukee - Reb 43.6 Reb
Milwaukee Milwaukee Off vs  Denver Denver Defense
Milwaukee Off vs Denver - Points For 121.1 Points For
Milwaukee Off vs Denver - Points Against 104.6 Points Against
Milwaukee - FG% 48.6 FG%
Denver - FG% 45.6 FG%
Milwaukee - Reb 51.3 Reb
Denver - Reb 40.6 Reb