It’s deja vu all over agafor the Milwaukee Bucks — their convention semi-final looks oddly similar to last year’s series against the Brooklyn Nets. To refresh your memory, they were saved from being sent a package by none other than Kevin Durant’s big toe, landed repeatedly on that three-point line, and sent the game to overtime, for allow the Bucks to put it away and continue on their way to them. first final victory in half a century.
But this time, they were on the other side of the aisle. If there’s any pattern to sports randomness and virtual chance, I’d say this year’s Bucks are, in a way, last year’s Nets. They are reigning champions with a new expectation of survival, and although that was not the case with Brooklyn last year, they have an all-star team that is expected to easily take care of a small market team. like Milwaukee. Khris Middleton’s absence is being felt acutely on the field against the Celtics, much like James Harden and Kyrie Irving’s injuries last year to Brooklyn in the first four and final three games of the series, respectively.
And just like KD did last year, Giannis Antetokounmpo is being forced to bring the team back – in last night’s loss he picked up 44 points, while the rest of the team combine contribute 51. It’s a ridiculous stat – nevertheless, one that is extremely similar to Durant’s performance in Game 7 last year, in which he scored 48 points compared to the rest of the 63-plus roster. again. There’s only so much a superstar can do to bring his team to victory through sheer will, and KD and Giannis are testing those limits.
Friday night’s Game 6, in which the Celtics overcame a dead-end situation with a strong finish and a magical performance from Jayson Tatum, will force Game 7, just as the Bucks did last year. Calling Jayson Tatum a rising star would be a disservice – he’s already risen. He scored 46 points last night and if he goes on to the knockout stages, it’s definitely a case for himself for that. Newly cast Eastern Larry Bird Conference Finals MVP Cup. Tatum, who faced Durant in the first round of this year’s playoffs and led his team to sweep Brooklyn, has his eye on Giannis as the next superstar opponent to make his way through the game – and he’s on On the way to do that, they both seem to be competing to break as many records as possible along the way.
On Sunday, the Bucks have a chance to turn things around, being the team that stepped up around their star, not touching a toe to the three-point line in a time of crisis, to live up to the expectations set for the year. last year and entered the Eastern Conference Finals. The Celtics are a more successful franchise than the Bucks in terms of championship history, but it’s still been more than a decade since they last took home the trophy. If the team can get past Giannis and help him accomplish this, the Bucks have a solid chance to repeat, but if it turns into a Tatum-Antetokounmpo showdown, there’s no telling who will take the lead. head.