Well they say a series doesn’t really start until a road team wins a game, so technically zero meaningful games have been played in this series so far. It’s 0-0. Three game series, Bucks get two at home.
Game four was miserable as a Bucks fan. Their defense, was just god awful. It reminded me of game 1 against the Celtics when they couldn’t stop a god damn thing. Norman Powell was making shots, Fred VanVleet was making shots, Ibaka came back from the dead, Danny Green still sucked, Kyle Lowry scored 25, and Leonard and Siakam only combined for 26 points yet the Raptors still put up 120 points.
When a teams two best players only score 26 points, you shouldn’t give up almost 100 points to the other guys on the team. The Bucks defense was fucking awful.
Now give credit where credit is due. The home cooking helped the Bucks in game two and it definitely helped the Raptors in game four. VanVleet how has been trash throughout the playoffs, was making every shot it felt like. The Raptors didn’t do this like they did in game 1 by making a ton of threes, they only put in 14. But every three they put in, felt like it was a dagger to the Bucks run. The Bucks would crawl back to within single digits in the 3rd quarter and then all the sudden a three would go in and the Bucks would crumble.
Let’s look ahead though because there is nothing we can change about the first four games of this series. What do the Bucks have to win this series in three games?
First and most obvious they have to play better defense. They left guys wide open throughout this game. I understand that is part of the Bucks defense, to allow lesser shooters shoot and hope they miss, but all they did in game four is give confidence to guys like Powell and VanVleet going forward. The Bucks are gonna need to at least give forth some kind of effort to close out on those guys. They played a defensive game-plan where they didn’t what Kawhi to beat them and he didn’t with his scoring. But I don’t see Kawhi scoring less than 20 again in this series, even with whatever injury he has or doesn’t have.
Secondly, Eric Bledsoe needs to play better or play less. Bledsoe can’t make a shot yet he keeps jacking shots up. I’ll give him this, one some of those shots he is WIDE OPEN, but attack the rim if nothing is falling. He is great at going to the rim and finishing. I want to see Bledsoe attack early and often in game five. If Bledsoe can’t get going, Bud needs to think about playing George Hill more who has been phenomenal during these playoffs.
The third point goes off Bledsoe a bit, but the Bucks need to get out in transition in game five. It felt like they never got out running and that hurt their offense and how effective it can be. Only three guys scored in double figures for the Bucks: Giannis, Middleton, and Mirotic. Not going to cut it. If the Bucks can get out running more from here on out, it’ll just open up their offense to more scoring and better opportunities.
Finally, I’d like to criticize the Bucks bench but they’ve been so damn good this postseason that it seems out of line BUT they played bad this game. Brogdon who has been the Buck best player this series never got going and only scored 4 points. George Hill only scored 5. All in all the bench only scored 23 points to the Raptors 48. I’d like to see the Bucks bench average 30+ these past few games. Again, the bench has been so good lately that I’m not too worried, but they were bad in game four.
I am not to worried about game 5. The Bucks just lost back to back games for only the second time all year. I think they’ll make the adjustments and bounce back in Game 5 to get the win.
Fear the Deer.