Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (left calf strain) has been ruled out ahead of Friday night’s Game 3 matchup with the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference first-round playoff series.

Antetokounmpo, 29, has already missed the first two games of this series. The eight-time All-Star hasn’t played since straining his left calf against the Boston Celtics on April 9.

“Giannis Antetokounmpo is listed as out for today’s game,” the Bucks posted from their official X account. The 11-year veteran missed Milwaukee’s final three regular-season games.

“He’s getting close,” Bucks coach Doc Rivers said Thursday. “But I don’t know what that even means. I’m being honest. I saw him moving around and, in my mind, I said he’s getting close. Does that mean a day, four days? I’m not sure.”

In 73 games (all starts) of the regular season, Antetokounmpo averaged 30.4 points, 11.5 rebounds, a career-high 6.5 assists, 1.2 steals, and 1.1 blocks while shooting 61.1% from the field and 65.7% at the foul line.

Of course, in Milwaukee’s 140-126 win over the Indiana Pacers on Dec. 13, Antetokounmpo recorded a career-high 64 points on only 28 field goal attempts, the most points scored with fewer than 30 field goal attempts in a game in NBA history. His 64 points were a franchise record as well.

Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo (left calf strain) remains out for Game 3 against Indiana Pacers

Milwaukee is also now without Khris Middleton, who suffered a sprained right ankle in Game 2 and did not practicing Thursday.

According to Milwaukee’s latest injury report, Antetokounmpo is still listed as doubtful, and Middleton remains questionable for Friday’s game at Indianapolis.

Middleton missed the Bucks’ final 10 playoff games in 2022 with a sprained medial collateral ligament.

Last year, a bruised lower back sidelined Antetokounmpo for Game 1 and caused him to miss the next two games in Milwaukee’s first-round series loss to an eighth-seeded Miami Heat squad.

The Bucks and Pacers are currently tied 1-1 in the best-of-seven series.

For noteworthy betting trends, Milwaukee is 1-6 in its last seven road games and 2-5 in its past seven games against the Pacers. The Bucks are 3-7 in their previous 10 contests as well.

Indiana is 5-2 in its past seven games and 7-13 in its last 20 games played in April. The Pacers are also 5-0 in their previous five home games, and the point total has gone over in six of their past seven contests.

NBA sportsbooks show the Bucks as 7-point underdogs at Indiana ahead of Game 3. Per ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, the Pacers hold a 58.9% chance of defeating Milwaukee.


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