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Milwaukee vs. Detroit: Bucks Avoid Poison Ivey in Motown

A Close Three Quarters Really Scared Me When Thinking of Having to Write This Recap If They Lost

Milwaukee Bucks v Detroit Pistons Photo by Brian Sevald/NBAE via Getty Images

The best team in the league, your Milwaukee Bucks, made a game against the Detroit Pistons that should have been a clear win a bit too close for comfort, winning 126-117. This game was close for three quarters, including Detroit getting within one point at 78-77, but a hot fourth from Jevon Carter really helped put some Cortizone cream on Jaden Ivey. From there, the lead ballooned to as big as 14, and they never looked back.

Three Takeaways

Rough shooting from deep in the first half kept Detroit close. All in all, the Bucks (minus Jevon Carter), had an off night from deep, but shooting 30% from three isn’t going to cut it and is a big reason why Detroit was able to stick around in the first half, and even the first three quarters. Detroit could not get going offensively for the life of them, and not being able to hit the open looks really could have helped this team go away much sooner. The Bucks without Jevon were just 8 of 37, or 22% from deep.

Khris Middleton looked like he was back, and so did the other big three. Khris was able to put up 34 points as he was able to show the basketball world that he is definitely still an All-Star caliber player. He was hitting step back after fade away after dribble shimmy shot and more, and it makes me feel really confident heading towards the postseason. Not only that, but the second big three of Brook, Bobby and Jevon all pitched in over 21 points as well.

Injuries really played a big role tonight. Not having Giannis or Jrue tonight really seemed to make the start slow for the Bucks, as we never really seemed to get off the ground when the Pistons were struggling. I think if we had Jrue or Giannis, or both, this game would have gotten out of hand fast. Those are our two primary attackers at the basket, and while Khris, Grayson and other Bucks are able to do it, when you’re used to not having to pick up certain roles as much, it can take a while to get going. I wonder if that happened, since both of them have rarely missed games together.

Bonus Bucks’ Bits

  • Small ticky-tack foul on Brook Lopez led to a nice first quarter for Brook Lopez, including a monster dunk, a nice Dirk-style fade away and 9 of the team’s first 24 points.
  • Goran Dragic made his debut as a Milwaukee Buck with about 2:18 left in the first quarter, which was also his 1,000th game in the regular and postseason. The first stat he did was commit a foul, but then immediately got a nice assist to Wes. That was the first of 3 assists in 3 minutes.
  • Jae Crowder also made his return after missing the last five games.
  • Khris was one of four scorers in the first half with double digits, with 17. He really looked on point today for most of the game.
  • Bobby Portis got his 35th double-double, and his 14th as a starter. He almost got it in the first half, with a 10 and 9 half.
  • The Pistons started off our big 16-game winning streak in late January, and ironically the following game was against Denver. It’s jusf funny how the schedule works out sometimes.
  • Not going to lie, I chuckled a bit when Jevon Carter missed a breakaway dunk in the early second quarter.
  • The Pistons were missing 75 points per game without players like Bojan Bogdanovic, Alec Burks, Cade Cunningham and Isaiah Stewart, but the young(er) guys played with a lot of heart tonight.
  • After the hottest stretch of his career, Pistons’ guard Cory Joseph posted a -11 +/- on 0/5 shooting in the first half. It was the longest stretch of his career scoring in double digits, at 9 games.
  • Detroit had a greater than 4 minute drought in the second quarter, but then proceeded to go 10 of 13 in the first 8 minutes of the third quarter.
  • Jaden Ivey had a 14 point third quarter to keep Detroit in it, and was leading all scorers with 25 after three. In the first 11 minutes of the fourth, he only had two points off of a questionable foul call. He wound up with 7 points, but five of them were in garbage time. Rookies, am I right?
  • Jevon was red-hot in the fourth quarter, and went 6 of 7 from three.
  • Thanasis got a minute, and wrapped up the game with a dunk!
  • With one minute to go, there was a shot of Dwane Casey on the sideline and he just looked so sad. How far he has fallen following his Toronto days, but I don’t blame him at all for this mess of a franchise.
  • Joe Ingles’ technical foul at the end of the third quarter didn’t lead to a run by either team. I was half expecting it to, so that was a bit surprising.
  • However, that technical is when my assistant decided she was done for the night, but luckily for us the Bucks were just getting started.
My assistant, Hermione.