Although they lacked home court advantage, the Bucks were able to control the flow of the game, beating the Celtics 101-89. Even with Giannis Antetokoumpo reminding everyone why he’s considered one of the best players in the world, I still expect this series to go to 6 or 7 games.
Bucks Role Players
The biggest question for the Bucks in game one was where the secondary offense would be coming from with Kris Middleton out. Well, the Bucks’ benched and rolled players all stepped up. I don’t think anyone really expected solid 20+ minutes from Grayson Allen, Jevon Carter, and Wesley Matthews in this game but the Bucks really needed those contributions to control the flow of game one. Jrue Holiday was also great for Milwaukee, putting the clamp on Tatum/Brown as well as being the Bucks’ primary scorer, scoring a team high of 25 points. For the Bucks to ultimately make it out of round 2, they will need to continue to empower their role players.
Closer Than It Looks
This was an important game for the Celtics to win given that this was a home game, and it may seem that the Bucks are running away with this series, but I truly believe the series is closer than it really looks. This was a bad offensive game for the Celtics as they shot only 33% from the field and turned the ball over 18 times, but I feel that they’re a few adjustments away and can really challenge the bucks. The Bucks’ interior defense was dominant, but Boston was able to get open three’s that just didn’t go in. Expect the Celtics to embrace those open shots more, and look for those open teammates and really challenge the Bucks there. Also, Boston rarely head hunted Bobby Portis or Grayson Allen, opting instead to challenge Jrue Holiday who is one of the best perimeter defenders in the game. I expect Boston to either use Jrue in more pick and roll actions to get him off their primary ball handlers, or to really go at the Bucks poor defenders such as Bobby Portis.
I’m expecting this to be an interesting series and it’s fun to reminded how dominant of a player Giannis truly is!