Milwaukee Bucks: 3 keys to victory in rematch versus Toronto Raptors

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - FEBRUARY 16 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - FEBRUARY 16 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors: Fred VanVleet
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – FEBRUARY 16 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

The Milwaukee Bucks will square off against the Toronto Raptors for the second time this week tonight, hopefully with a different end result.

Milwaukee kicked off their eight-game homestand with a 124-113 loss to Toronto Tuesday night, and they have now lost their last four consecutive games. Although Giannis Antetokounmpo assured after the game that there is no reason to hit the panic button just yet, there is certainly a growing sense of concern surrounding this team.

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The Bucks have now dropped to just 16-12 on the season, sitting at third place in the packed Eastern Conference standings behind the Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets.

For a Milwaukee team that lost just 17 out of 73 regular season games last year, their recurring issues against formidable opponents have been worrisome this year.

Winning could help solve these issues, and the Bucks will have the opportunity to do so in tonight’s rematch against the Raptors. With that being said, here are three keys to victory that will help Milwaukee get back in the win column against their Eastern Conference foes.

First key to victory in rematch versus Toronto Raptors — Milwaukee Bucks need to slow down Toronto’s 3-point shooting

The Raptors have a well-documented history of lighting the Bucks up from behind the arc, and Tuesday night carried on that tradition.

Toronto shot 17-of-43 from long-range Tuesday and torched Milwaukee’s nearly nonexistent 3-point defense yet again. The Raptors heavily dependent on their shooting from downtown, and not to sound like a broken record, but Milwaukee cannot let their opponents heat up from distance like they did Tuesday. Milwaukee’s opponents are not shooting 38.8 percent from 3-point range on the season, the fifth-highest mark in the NBA.

Playing against a Raptors team that ranks third in both 3-point attempts and makes per game, leaving them open repeatedly while daring them to shoot is a recipe for disaster.

Simply put, the Bucks need to adjust defensively and keep the Raptors at bay from deep before they can find a solid groove and take control of the game. However, as evidenced by Milwaukee’s lackluster performance Tuesday night, that is far easier said than done.