3 Adjustments the Milwaukee Bucks must make in Game 2 vs. Miami Heat

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - APRIL 16 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - APRIL 16 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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The Milwaukee Bucks kicked off the 2023 NBA Playoffs with a home loss to the Miami Heat in a game where Giannis Antetokounmpo exited early with a back contusion.

It was a grueling game to witness, and the Bucks have to learn from it if they want to get back in the win column this series. While it all starts with Giannis Antetokounmpo’s health, there are no shortage of mistakes from Game 1 that the Bucks can look to correct in Game 2. With that said, let us look at three adjustments the Milwaukee Bucks must make in a pivotal Game 2.

1 – Figure things out on the perimeter

Game 1 between the Bucks and Heat was dictated by 3-point shooting. The Bucks shot a grueling 11-of-45 (24.4 percent) from long range, while the Heat countered with a scorching hot 15-of-25 (60 percent) performance. The Milwaukee Bucks will have to make some tweaks on both ends to prevent something like that from dictating the game once again.

First and foremost, having Antetokounmpo back will change things on both ends. When he went out in Game 1, the Bucks resulted to shooting far more 3-pointers than they have typically been accustomed to because there was a giant hole in the offense. The Bucks certainly will not cease letting it fly entirely, as that is the team’s mantra, but when the shot is not falling, there are times when scorers just need to put their heads down and go to the hoop.

If Joe Ingles will get legitimate time on the floor, the Bucks should look to utilize the pick-and-roll with him and Brook Lopez, who is going to be incredibly important moving forward, occasionally, as that was a secret weapon in the regular season. That’s just one way the Bucks could mix things up offensively, but there are plenty of other options. To put it plainly, they cannot have a repeat of Game 1 where they simply lived and ultimately died by the 3-pointer.

On the defensive end, the Bucks simply have to tighten up around the perimeter. The Heat got too many good looks from long-range, and they outright feasted all game long. Per StatMuse, Miami had the second most efficient shooting playoff game in franchise history in Game 1. Some Bucks fans think that it was an outlier shooting performance, but this Heat team can undoubtedly get it going nightly if the Bucks are going to cough up those good looks. Making things harder needs to be a point of emphasis for the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 2.