The Milwaukee Bucks and Golden State Warriors have had their fair share of tussles over the years. They’ll start anew tonight though with Milwaukee finally fielding a competent coach to combat Steve Kerr.
Milwaukee’s road trip started off with a slight detour to the losing column in Portland. C.J. McCollum going off for 40 is going to make it tough for anyone to pull out a victory, but the Bucks found themselves in their first loss that didn’t come down to the wire. The Blazers won a little differently than the Celtics did, as Portland hit just one more triple than Milwaukee. Instead, the Blazers scored a ludicrous 32 points from midrange to Milwaukee’s two. I’ll take that math any day of the week. We’ll see how they hold up against Golden State tonight.
As for injuries, John Henson is listed as questionable tonight, so #ThonWatch is officially on.
Player to Watch: Eric Bledsoe
He’ll likely be tasked with trying to pound his way through screens to stop Stephen Curry from going off tonight. In addition, he’s coming off a tough 2-12 performance up in Portland. Expect him to try and attack the basket tonight with Draymond out of the lineup. His more important job remains on the defensive end though.
Let’s see. They’re 10-1, their only loss of the season came by two points to the equally scary Denver Nuggets and seem poised for another championship season. They’re also fresh off a 117-101 whooping of the Memphis Grizzlies. One interesting wrinkle is that their typically frequent 3-point shooters are actually finding a fair share of jumpers inside the arc. Per Cleaning The Glass, the Warriors rank just 14th in terms of frequency of 3-point shots, whereas they rank sixth in terms of midrange jumpers. Unfortunately, they’re first in terms of 3-point FG% and third from midrange. With Milwaukee forcing opponents into that typically inefficient zone, tonight will be an intriguing measuring stick of Bud’s defensive gambit.
Player to Watch: Stephen Curry
I suppose I could get all deep NBA on you and drop Jordan Bell or someone, but it’s not often you get a chance to check out Curry against the Bucks. The dude is shooting 50.8% from deep on 11.1 attempts per game. Good luck Eric Bledsoe, and godspeed.
Game 11: Against Golden State, the Bucks will...
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Win big (by 10 or more points)
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Lose close (by 9 or less points)
Lose big (by 10 or more points)