3 takeaways from Milwaukee Bucks’ hectic Game 1 win over Chicago Bulls

Apr 17, 2022; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 17, 2022; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Khris Middleton, Chicago Bulls: Alex Caruso, Coby White
Apr 17, 2022; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports /

Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday showed significant signs of rust, but they did just enough to help the Milwaukee Bucks secure the win

Given that Milwaukee’s last regular season game was exactly one week before Game 1, there was expected to be some rust. Two Bucks that unquestionably showed signs were Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday, who combined to score just 26 points on 10-of-26 (38.5 percent) shooting along with 11 of the team’s 21 total turnovers.

It was an especially difficult night for Middleton as he scored 11 points on 4-of-13 shooting, which included a vile 1-of-7 from long range. The forward could not get himself into a shooting rhythm in this one from start to finish, and he did himself no favors with a slew of careless turnovers, having tallied a game-high seven of them. Middleton is bound to have these tough shooting nights like all players will on occasion, but the turnovers were certainly worrisome. Essentially all of them were caused by sloppy and outright reckless passes that could have been avoided, which had been one of the forward’s notable flaws throughout the regular season. In addition to getting his shooting act together, Middleton must tighten up his care with the basketball moving forward.

Holiday was more productive than Middleton as he chipped in 15 points on 6-of-16 shooting, but his struggles were on full display throughout the first three quarters. Having tallied four turnovers of his own, the guard had his share of issues passing the basketball as well, along with his subpar shooting. Despite how much he struggled for most of the night, Holiday flipped the switch in the fourth quarter as he tallied a game-high nine points on 3-of-6 shooting in the period, while he also knocked down the game-sealing free throws. While it is always welcoming to see Holiday come to life in the fourth quarter, the Bucks will need more from him during the first three periods as they look to make some noise in these playoffs.

Despite the struggles from these two, the Bucks managed to get the win, which is what matters. These two must put this ugly game in the rearview and attempt to start fresh once Game 2 starts on Wednesday, as the Milwaukee Bucks will need them playing at their best.