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Milwaukee vs. Miami Game 5: Heat Eliminate Bucks, 128-126

The Bucks blow another fourth quarter lead as their season is now done

NBA: Playoffs-Miami Heat at Milwaukee Bucks Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

The Milwaukee Bucks’ season is over, as they were unable to extend the series, crumbling at home to the Miami Heat, 128-126.

In addition to the Bucks just continuing to look sluggish to start things off, the Heat continued their hot shooting. They’d go 6-of-13 from the perimeter, which allowed them to overtake the lead midway through the period. Headed into the second quarter, Miami was in front by a 36-33 score.

With Giannis and Khris resting around the middle of the second quarter, the Bucks would embark on a run that saw them leapfrog the Heat and take the lead. Once they came back, the lead would expand to double-digits. Miami placed a little bit of a dent into things before the halftime bell, but the Bucks carried a 69-63 lead.

Miami came out firing to start the second half, erasing Milwaukee’s lead in a mere manner of moments and hopping in front. However, the Bucks responded in a massive way, sinking a flurry of threes. They’d eventually find themselves with a double-digit lead and going into the fourth, hold a commanding 102-86 lead thanks to a 22-5 run.

The fourth would be a carbon copy of Game 4. The Bucks had a double-digit lead, only to watch it vanish before their eyes. It’d come down to Jimmy Butler tying the game off an in-bounds pass and sending things to overtime.

In overtime, it was clear that the Bucks were lost. They didn’t have composure. They played too fast. They were making terrible decisions. It was just terrible all-around. Milwaukee would have a chance to tie it or take the lead in the final seconds, but they never got a shot off, finishing their season with a 128-126 loss.

Jimmy Butler continued his outstanding performances in this series, erupting for a game-high 42 points on 17-of-33 shooting. Gabe Vincent was clutch as well, pouring in 22 points of his own.

For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo led the way with 38 points. Khris Middleton finished with 33 points.

Three Observations

For the second consecutive game, the Bucks had a massive collapse.

I swear, this was a copy-and-paste of the same finish we saw Monday night in Miami. The Bucks were up by double-digits and things looked promising for them to head to South Beach for a Game 6. But then, another scoring drought occurred. They’d score just 16 points in the fourth quarter, leaving the door open for the Heat to storm a comeback — and that’s exactly what they did:

Late in the season, it’s just brutal as to how much their offense stalled. They looked like the Badgers out there in multiple games, unable to put a basket in. In the end, it proved to be one of the main things that ended their season.

Milwaukee couldn’t hit their free throws and it cost them the game.

This is just brutal to look at after the game went to overtime. The Bucks were horrendous from the free throw line, going 14-of-33 on the night. Giannis couldn’t hit anything from there as well, going just 10-of-23. It’s a fundamental that’s preached all the way from junior high basketball teams — hit your free throws. When you don’t, opportunities are missed. It’s as simple as that. The Bucks didn’t, and they paid for it.

Jimmy Butler remained sensational.

After he erupted for 56 points in Game 4, some were unsure if Jimmy Butler would be able to put up another massive outing. Spoiler: He was able to do so. He’d explode for 42 points and was once again the key reason as to why the Bucks lost the game. It was clear that Milwaukee’s approach on defense didn’t work with him all season, as they put Jrue Holiday on him for the majority of the series. That didn’t work. When Giannis was asked if he would’ve liked to be the primary defender on him more, he had a simple answer — “Yes.”

Bonus Bucks Bits

  • Was this season a failure for the Bucks? Here are some of their answers:

Eric then asked Giannis the same question:

  • I don’t know how you don’t get a shot off:
  • After Jimmy Butler tied things up at the end of regulation, there was 0.5 seconds remaining. Mike Budenholzer did not call a timeout. It would’ve advanced the ball. Here are his thoughts postgame:
  • We now head into an offseason with a multitude of uncertainty. Here’s a little bit from Giannis on Khris’ situation:
  • Last, let’s end with a smile:
  • And unfortunately, this wraps up my game coverage for Brew Hoop for this season. Thanks to all of you who read not just my stuff, but Brew Hoop in general. It remains a great joy for me to be able to deliver this content to all of you. I’m already itching to get back next fall and for the 2023-24 season!