After years of lobbying, calling and cajoling city and state politicians, and construction, the Milwaukee Bucks will get to open their season in a brand new arena: Fiserv Forum. The Bucks will host a division rival on this inaugural evening, the Indiana Pacers. Both teams opened their season with a W on Wednesday night and will look to go 2-0.
It was a tale of two halves for Milwaukee Wednesday night against the Charlotte Hornets; they were cruising and looking like an offensive juggernaut in the first half, but reverted to old (bad) habits in a sloppy second half. The Bucks were able to win thanks to a pair of Giannis Antetokounmpo free throws. Milwaukee looked like a well-coached team under Mike Budenholzer, both offensively and defensively, and he is already showing why many of the Bucks’ brass were considering him the biggest acquisition of the season.
Bucks Player to Watch: Malcolm Brogdon
The President had a solid game against the Hornets, scoring 10 points on 4-9 shooting, which included a pair of three pointers and six assists. He was guilty at times of dribbling too much, something I’m sure Budenholzer will want reduced tonight. Brogdon will have the task of guarding star player Victor Oladipo, and trying to contain him is a tough ask.
Indiana started their season strong, winning 111-83 against the Memphis Grizzlies. After a surprise season that resulted in a playoff berth, the Pacers have brought the majority of their key pieces back while adding wing players Tyreke Evans and Doug McDermott and drafting point guard – and Riley’s second player in the draft – Aaron Holiday.
Pacers Player to Watch: Victor Oladipo
Oladipo looks to continue building on his 2017-2018 Most Improved Player season that saw him average 23.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 4.3 assists. Oladipo didn’t seem to miss a step in his first game, getting 15 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists last night in just 26 minutes of play. He is the player the Bucks need watch most closely, as he is their catalyst of the Indiana offense.