In the heavily anticipated debut of Jrue Holiday on the Bucks, the team showed there is still much work to be done. Shaking off the rust, both teams’ offenses were unable to score much in the first quarter. The starting lineup of Giannis, Middleton, Jrue, Lopez and Donte showed us what they might be capable of on defense however. Giannis and Brook Lopez both defended the rim very well. Meanwhile Jrue and Donte filled in the passing lanes and defended the perimeter extremely well in the first half.
Only a few minutes into the game, Giannis took an inadvertent elbow to the face. He had to leave the game momentarily as blood was dripping from above his eye. Thankfully it wasn’t a broken nose or something that could have held him out of future games. After getting bandaged up, Giannis came back to finish the half with 25 points. This included going 6/7 from the free throw line with a new shooting form he’s worked on. If Giannis can make free throws consistently like that, the NBA needs to watch out.
Bucks Second Half Woes
The third quarter is where everything fell apart for the Bucks. After being up 59-53 at halftime, they allowed the Mavericks to make a 14-2 run to begin the third period. Dallas was making almost everything they shot and Milwaukee couldn’t buy a bucket. It felt like there was a lack of energy. As a result, Dallas ended up a 23 point advantage for the quarter. Hopefully this was just preseason rust that can be shaken out before the games matter.
The fourth quarter was predominantly only played by the benches of both teams. It was ugly for the most part, but the Bucks did gain some points back by the end of the game. In the end the star of the fourth was without a doubt DJ Wilson. He scored all 14 of his points in the final quarter and had some good defensive plays. Let’s hope he can continue that trend moving forward.
Jrue had a quiet night offensively but still showed some great defense with some deflected passes. He also had a nice no-look pass to new Buck Bobby Portis for a slam. There were moments of brilliance from him that we hope to see much more of as he gets acclimated to his new team.
Khris Middleton had a business-as-usual night for himself. He racked up 18 points in 25 minutes. Nothing too flashy as half of them came from the free throw line. But overall a very solid performance from him tonight.
Bobby Portis also stood out tonight, especially compared to the other new signings. He showed off his athleticism and physicality throughout his 20 mins of play. Finishing the game with 14 points and 13 rebounds, the Bucks may have gotten a steal here.
Next up, the Bucks play the Mavericks again Monday night at 7 PM CST. We will have the coverage for you here again then!