Milwaukee Bucks: 3 keys to victory when hosting Utah Jazz

Nov 8, 2019; Salt Lake City, UT, USA (Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports)
Nov 8, 2019; Salt Lake City, UT, USA (Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Jan 6, 2021; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Nick Monroe/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports)
Jan 6, 2021; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Nick Monroe/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports) /

Third key – Can the Milwaukee Bucks sustain hot 3-point shooting?

The Bucks will face up against the Jazz as the league’s leading 3-point shooting team, both in terms of total makes (141) and efficiency (43.7 percent). Their firepower has been plain to see after hitting an NBA-record 29 triples against the Miami Heat late last month and hitting 15 or more threes in five of their eight games to start the season.

Milwaukee’s added dose of shooting and overall shotmaking with players such as Bryn Forbes and Bobby Portis and rookie forward Jordan Nwora recently getting some run in the rotation with the injury to Pat Connaughton has helped the Bucks become the league’s best offense.

Now the Bucks go up against a Jazz team that is one of the best in defending the three so far this season as they rank only behind the Phoenix Suns and Indiana Pacers in opponent 3-point attempts per game (30.4). The problem, though, is Utah’s opponents have shot 40.3 percent from deep this season, the second-worst mark in the league.

What can’t be lost here is the Bucks under head coach Mike Budenholzer going up against one of his coaching disciples in Quin Snyder. Both teams have a similar set of defensive principles based on their personnel and based on the Jazz’s few additions this offseason, they have doubled down on their own drop-back defensive scheme.

With the Jazz placing such an emphasis on defending the 3-point line but being susceptible to allowing such a high percentage to their opponents, the Bucks will provide a fascinating test to their 3-point defense at this point in the season.

This certainly goes hand-in-hand with how the Jazz will function in being able to contain Antetokounmpo from getting to the basket, especially as he’s been getting back up to speed with his scoring feasts over this homestand. Needless to say, the Bucks’ shooters will have to stay the course and let it fly often when those opportunities present themselves.

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We’ll find out who will take the meeting between the Bucks and the Utah Jazz when Friday night’s game tips off at 7 p.m. central time at Fiserv Forum. You can catch the action on Fox Sports Wisconsin or via NBA League Pass for those living out of the area.