Yes, even after living through the Milwaukee Bucks disappointing 113-124 loss against the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday, you must now be subjected to it again. Let’s hope this isn’t a Sisyphean situation, folks...
Where We’re At
A fairly similar place as Tuesday it turns out, only Giannis Antetokounmpo has calmly planted himself in a meditative pose at the very eye of the Bucks Twitter storm:
"I kind of feel like everybody (on Twitter and social media) is in panic mode. And that should not be the case." - @Giannis_An34— Eric Nehm (@eric_nehm) February 17, 2021
Giannis has taken the long-view, and I’ve chosen too as well. I don’t begrudge anyone for being reasonably distressed by the continued lack of defensive success or their failings in the fourth quarter, but I get so hot and bothered by the up-and-downs of the Playoffs, it’s just not healthy for me to be riding that rollercoaster all regular season long. There’s a solid tip for you to employ during heart health month. Tuesday’s contest was dispiriting in many different ways, chief among them being the disappearing act by Khris Middleton, who attempted just eight shots, added zero assists and turned it over five times. It was...not his night. Milwaukee overall barely outscored the Raptors in the paint (50-46) despite a sizable size advantage. We’ll see if they can gin up some more scoring and shore up the transition defense in this one.
The fact Toronto was able to pull out the win without Lowry for almost the entire second half was particularly impressive. Fred VanVleet posted 33 points on 22 shots to go along with seven assists. Chris Boucher was a particular boon off the bench, hitting 4-7 from deep and generally making Milwaukee pay for playing its drop coverage. We’ll see how Bud handles Brook Lopez defensively in this one.
Kyle Lowry is the only notable addition to the Raptors injury report, and he’s questionable for the contest.
Player to Watch
Donte DiVincenzo went 1-8 from deep despite a few fairly easy looks (including late). It was disappointing to say the least, but he did show a bit of playmaking ability with eight assists. Many of those felt like dishes inside to another cutter or interior player. The Bucks don’t need him to be extraordinary in Jrue Holiday’s absence to win, but they at least him to be ordinary as a shooter to likely win. Hopefully he bounces back in this one.
Game 29: Against the Raptors, Milwaukee will....
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