Defense wins championships, or so the saying goes. (I always thought it was getting more points than the other team but what do I know?) And if that is the case the Bucks might be in for a good playoff run. As we look deeper into where the Bucks defense is at, you might want to add this simple line when you are chatting it up over beers with your friends, talking hoops: “The Bucks defense looks good again, almost like last year.” Because statistically, it does.
With scoring down league-wide, having a strong defense might be the ticket a team needs to make a successful championship run.
Team Defensive Rank (7th)
Last year the Bucks ranked seventh in team defense. This season the Bucks rank…. 7th in team defense. So, many would take that as a good sign, right? Well, kinda.
Once you peel back the onion a little bit on that particular statistical category, it really comes down to a more generalized sense of defense. It goes back to total points. It is good to give up less points than they make but it also breaks down into how you caregiving up the points and where your weaknesses might be.
Last year the story seemed to be the Bucks’ inability to guard against the 3pointer. (44% vs 37% this year.) Now they seem to have that solved. Now the defensive vulnerability seems to be closer to the basket. With Brook Lopez back, that bodes well for the Bucks.
It all comes down to stops
A better, more concerning statistic for the Bucks entering the playoffs is field goal percentage differential? “Huh”, you may ask. Simply put, it is a team’s field goal percentage vs their opponents. Currently, the Bucks have a -.4% DFG%/FG%. So they are making more buckets than what they are giving up by four-tenths of a percent.
And last year? The Bucks had a -8%. So, you’d like to see the Bucks get into that lockdown, playoff mode where every possession counts and stops matter.
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