Bucks Gaming miss playoffs following closing loss to Knicks Gaming

LONG ISLAND CITY, NY - AUGUST 10: (Photo by Michelle Farsi/NBAE via Getty Images)
LONG ISLAND CITY, NY - AUGUST 10: (Photo by Michelle Farsi/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Bucks Gaming will miss the NBA 2K League playoffs for the second year in a row following a season closing loss to Knicks Gaming on Wednesday night.

After stumbling through the second half of the season, Bucks Gaming entered Wednesday night’s game with Knicks Gaming knowing their postseason fate was out of their own hands.

For as much as there were various permutations that could potentially come into play, the overall task couldn’t have been any more simple for the Bucks: win or they were guaranteed to go home.

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In the end, it proved to be the latter of those two options for Milwaukee as the Knicks prevailed with a 62-56 victory.

It looked as if a very different story was on the cards as the Bucks came out of the gates with the kind of strong start that was required.

As he has done for most of the year, it was Plondo who led the charge for Milwaukee. Playing at the power forward position once again, Plondo poured in 12 first quarter points to give Milwaukee a 17-13 lead at the end of the opening period. A stellar first season overall should certainly mean Plondo’s name will be in the conversation for Rookie of the Year.

Unfortunately for Milwaukee, the positive start was to prove short-lived as it all went wrong in the second period. While the Bucks’ offense slowed down to just 11 points, the Knicks got red-hot as they rolled off an impressive 25-points in the quarter.

Facing a 10-point deficit heading into the second quarter, the Bucks needed to find some success from three-point range to eat into the deficit. That run didn’t materialize, though, and the Bucks will reflect on a 5-of-16 three-point shooting performance as a fatal blow that ultimately brought an end to their season.

There were brief runs when it seemed like Milwaukee could give themselves a chance in the second half, but none proved significant enough to really offer up too much excitement from a Bucks’ perspective.

With their season at an end, the Bucks finish with a .500 record, a two-game improvement on their first season but still comfortably below the level they would have hoped to reach after a promising start to this campaign.

Now, the questions will turn to the big decision facing the Bucks ahead of the expansion draft ahead of next season. Milwaukee will only be able to protect two players to guarantee their return for next year. At present, ARooks and Plondo would seem like locks for those spots, but who knows whether larger changes could be on the agenda for Milwaukee either.

Regardless, improved guard play will be a must for the Bucks next season and it’s an area where the team’s draft record has left plenty to be desired through their first two seasons.

Next. Bucks Gaming fall back in playoff race after another mixed week. dark

For now, though, Bucks Gaming will be settled to watch the postseason from the sidelines and reflect on where it all went wrong for them this season.