Well, there isn’t much to say after losing three straight at home other than to hope Milwaukee can get healthy soon. The Bucks are simply just getting overpowered missing Jrue and Brook, throw Middleton into that group and it was going to take an incredible effort to win this game. They played from behind most of the game but continually fought back to make it a contest throughout. Milwaukee just didn’t have enough fire power in the end. Let me break down who helped the Bucks and who didn’t play to their expectations.
Giannis was the only one of the “Big Three” to play tonight and he played as well as we could’ve hoped. In 35 minutes of play he finished with 25 points, six assists and seven rebounds. These aren’t eye popping stats for him, but he had to shoulder much of the load with so many people missing. The supporting cast was not able to alleviate any of the defensive pressure from him, so scoring 25 on 10/20 shooting is nothing to sneeze at. Giannis also had a couple big blocks and still showed he as the best player on the floor. The MVP is having to expend a lot of energy on both ends to keep Milwaukee afloat in these games so his efficiency might take a dip, but nonetheless he played well today.
Grayson Allen may have had his best game as a Buck so far. He dropped 18 points in 31 minutes, shooting 5/10 from deep. If he can just hit his open shots he is a great player to pair with Giannis. It seems Allen is left wide open at some point almost every possession with Giannis on the court. Grayson almost singlehandedly brought Milwaukee back in the game at the end with a barrage of threes to bring them within four points with 1:39 left. Let’s hope this a sign of what’s to come for Allen!
Portis returned to action after sitting out the game last night as he nurtures his hamstring injury. While he wasn’t the most efficient tonight (6/15 shooting), he did bring in much needed energy at times. He finished the night with 15 points and five rebounds in 19 minutes of play. I believe once he get’s a few more games under his belt his shot will be back in rhythm and he will make a high percentage of his shots once again.
The last two nights have not been great for Nwora. Between last night and tonight he’s made a combined 3/14 shots for a measly eight points. With the Bucks being so shorthanded they are relying on Nwora to step up and provide some scoring which he hasn’t done lately. On top of that, he was quite sloppy offensively in the first half and turned it over a couple times. He was able to make a couple nice passes, but he also had many questionable ones as well. If Jordan is going to keep getting minutes when Milwaukee is back to health he will need to be a reliable scorer. His defense is a work in progress so he must contribute on offense.
The usually reliable Connaughton struggled to hit his outside shots today. Going 1/5 from deep and finishing with five points on 2/7 shooting overall. Pat is an above average defender for his size when he is guarding bigs, as he’s able to use his great vertical to contest shots. However, he at times gets exploited by opposing guards like he was tonight. He simply cannot keep up with the quicker guards in the league, especially when getting screened and it can lead to open three point shots. Tonight he gave up a few open looks from deep and fouled Clarkson from behind on one as well. Sometimes Pat is great, he just wasn’t playing up to his standards tonight.
While Hood’s night was shortened due to injury, he wasn’t very productive while he was on the court. In 11 minutes he didn’t score as single point on 0/3 shooting. Additionally, he only grabbed one rebound and dished out one assist. His +/- was -8 in his limited work, essentially a negative point per minute. Let’s hope that Hood can become a contributor to this team once he’s healthy and has time to mesh with the squad.
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