The Milwaukee Bucks will look to take their season series with the Brooklyn Nets in the final regular season meeting between the two teams Tuesday night at Fiserv Forum.
After the Nets struck first with a nailbiting victory back on January 18, the Bucks battled back and took their own nailbiting 117-114 win over the Nets Sunday afternoon on their home floor to even up the season series.
While we wait for who takes the rubber match, both matchups featuring two of the three best teams in the East hasn’t disappointed whatsoever and it only fuels the fire for wanting to see a playoff series between both the Bucks and the Nets. As of now, that could come as soon as the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
So without further ado, let’s explore three trends to watch for ahead of the Milwaukee Bucks’ final regular season clash with the Brooklyn Nets Tuesday night.
Milwaukee Bucks will be happy with another field day for Giannis Antetokounmpo
In the two matchups we’ve seen between the Bucks and the Nets, Brooklyn has made quite the interesting decision in solely defending Giannis Antetokounmpo one-on-one.
That strategy has led to the scoring outbursts that Antetokounmpo had this year when going up against the Nets. Antetokounmpo had 34 points on 13-for-26 shooting in the Bucks’ first meeting against the Nets back in January and exploded with a season-high 49 points on 21-for-36 shooting on Sunday.
While I went into greater detail into Antetokounmpo’s scoring performance, it’s worth exploring and wondering why the Nets have continued holding to this strategy.
DeAndre Jordan is far from the athletic rim protector he once was as a member of the Los Angeles Clippers and Antetokounmpo surely welcome any and every opportunity to go one-on-one against the veteran big man. Blake Griffin has made a habit of trying to get under Antetokounmpo’s skin historically, but even that didn’t stop the reigning MVP from wreaking havoc.
Whether the Nets are holding back on how they would cover Antetokounmpo until the playoffs is a fair question to consider. However, the Nets simply don’t have the defensive personnel to really bottle up Antetokounmpo’s persistent downhill attacking as we saw the Toronto Raptors and Miami Heat do in the Bucks’ last two playoff runs.
Either way, Antetokounmpo has looked might comfortable getting to his spots on the floor. Whether he will continue hitting shots from outside of the paint like he did Sunday remains to be seen, but Brooklyn has made it clear that they’ll let him get what he wants if it means slowing down the Bucks’ supporting cast.