Milwaukee Bucks: 3 reasons why fans will never forget P.J. Tucker

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 22 (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 22 (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: P.J. Tucker, Jrue Holiday, Brooklyn Nets: Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin, Bruce Brown
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – JUNE 10 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Reasons why Milwaukee Bucks fans will never forget P.J. Tucker – His mindset and intensity

After being punched in the mouth during the last two postseasons, the Bucks needed a boost of toughness to avoid history repeating itself.

Tucker helped bring an edge to this locker room immediately after his plane touched down in the city of Milwaukee. Having worked his way up to the NBA level after playing overseas for several years and never being outright handed anything, the forward understands hard work and what it takes to succeed at this level. That mindset spread throughout this roster and helped create the “be dogs” mentality that this team embraced in the playoffs. Tucker previously detailed how this saying came to be and how it helped bring the team together:

"“Be dogs. That’s all we talk about. That’s all I ever talk about, we’ve gotta be dogs. The perception of us and what people think in the past, we are erasing that. We’re coming out every night focused, not shying away from moments. I wasn’t here, Jrue wasn’t here, Bobby [wasn’t here], we’ve got a bunch of new guys in addition to everybody who’s been here, but we’re just bringing that mentality. That’s what it’s about, us carrying that mentality every game, every possession, every day.”"

Perhaps no instance captures this mentality more perfectly than when Tucker went nose to nose with Durant in Game 3 of the Nets series. With the Bucks having been embarrassed during the opening two games of the series, they desperately needed to win this game, and Tucker was not going to let them take a beating. After objecting to a foul called on him while guarding Durant, he exchanged some words with the forward and the two butted heads as they had to be separated. That moment showed some toughness and perhaps helped inspire this team as they would win four out of the next five games to advance.