I’ll never forget the basketball-sized pit in my stomach the entire day leading up to Game Seven of the Milwaukee Bucks and Brooklyn Nets series. It delivered more than any fan or onlooker could’ve expected. A little over a year and a half later, Brooklyn only has the spare parts from that team and a once-promising rivalry is all but gone. Now, Milwaukee goes for 15 straight wins against a load of wings while Brooklyn tries to see if its KD playoff padding is enough for it to stay in the postseason.
Where We’re At
The Milwaukee Bucks are humming with the longest winning streak in the NBA this season. It’s included squeakers, routs, drama and comedy, really everything you could want from a team gearing up for a postseason run. On Sunday, even without Giannis Antetokounmpo available, Jrue Holiday carried the torch against the Phoenix Suns to erase an 8-point deficit in the fourth and snag another win. Finals flashbacks came with clutch defensive plays, and now the Bucks look like they may have their superstar back in the lineup already after he left only a few minutes into the Miami Heat drubbing last Friday. Plus, the Celtics lost to the Knicks last night, giving Milwaukee the 1 seed for the moment. Life is good.
Meanwhile in Brooklyn, KD and Kyrie are gone, in are a bunch of role players trying to find their way as a team. Mikal Bridges is now ostensibly the face of this franchise. We don’t have much of a sample size for how this revamped team will play, but the Nets are coming off a two-point defeat at Trae Young’s game-winning hands on Sunday.
On the injury report, Giannis was probable and Wes Matthews was out.
For Brooklyn, Ben Simmons is the only player out.
Player to Watch
Jae Crowder has fit in seamlessly so far, and he’ll have plenty of wings on Brooklyn to continue testing his defensive mettle. This seems like a team ripe for switching 1-4 plenty of times, and I wanna see how Crowder navigates those scenarios and if he’ll ever hit a 3-point swoon offensively.
Game 61: Against Brooklyn, the Bucks will...
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Win big (by 10 or more points)
Win close (by 9 or fewer points)
Lose close (by 9 or fewer points)
Lose big (by 10 or more points)
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