Milwaukee Bucks Grades, Reaction From 105-102 2OT Victory Over Cleveland Cavaliers

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Nov 14, 2015; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Jabari Parker (12), guard Michael Carter-Williams (5) and Cleveland Cavaliers guard Mo Williams (52) battle for a loose ball during the third quarter at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Reactions: The Bad

  • How on earth does Richard Jefferson (Richard freaking Jefferson!) light you up like that in the fourth quarter? If the Bucks had a good answer for him they might not have played an extra two sessions. Here’s what went down. LeBron James exited the game late in the third quarter, at the crest of an uproarious Buck’s run, and the Bucks were able to take a nine point advantage into the fourth. Then Jefferson detonated for ten points in less than six minutes. He hit a pair of wide open threes with long-range jumpers and bunnies at the rim.What the heck happened there? I would call it a revenge performance, but he was never really into being a Buck was he?
  • You know all those nice things I said about the Buck’s defense earlier? Yeah, that doesn’t apply to LeBron James. He did what he wanted until 2OT when Black Hole Bayless shut him down. Here’s an instance of truly terrible defense. Reminiscent of that rebounding gaffe in Denver. Watch as LeBron turns the corner and NO ONE DOES ANYTHING to help. Come on guys. My only guess is they really, really, really didn’t want to give up a three. Yeah, I’ll stick with that take.
  • This game almost got away. Like, razor’s edge close. The Bucks had every opportunity in the world to close it out in regulation, but wilted in the moment. We’ve seen this before. You know, the narrative where the Bucks play very well for 46 minutes and then completely disappear in the closing moments. That happened again Saturday night. Offensively no one stepped up to close out Cleveland. And then, with the game tied and the Bucks with the final possession what do they do? Bayless iso for an 18 foot fadeaway jumper. It predictably clanked off the rim. The Bucks NEED to play better offense down the stretch. They need a closer to step up.
  • This is how annoying LeBron James is. Giannis needs to fight through that screen or go over the top of it. Going under is not an option.
  • It took two overtimes for a member of the Buck’s starting unit to hit a three. In fact, it took that long for anyone other than Giannis to even attempt one! I suppose you could argue it was worth the wait (Middleton hit a heavily contested three to match LeBron’s triple to start 2OT). Three point shooting could be a problem with this unit. MCW passed up good looks. Giannis missed the ones he got. Middleton’s been gun shy. And Parker has yet to attempt a three pointer this season. Where’s shooting going to come from? Middleton is the obvious answer (44.2% from three so far). He needs to let it fly more.

Next: Grades: Starters