Bucks Buzz: Milwaukee Stops Portland In Their Tracks
Milwaukee Bucks are still on the West Coast. They’ll be there until tomorrow when they finish it off versus Sacramento Kings. Milwaukee can have a winning West Coast road trip for the first time in forever. Their win tonight versus Portland had much to do with that. Milwaukee cooled down Trail Blazers as they held them to zero buckets in the final three minutes getting a 94-91 victory and earning a sweep against Portland for the season. Milwaukee is once again .500, and they’re only a game behind Indiana for the six seed in the Eastern Conference plus they own the tiebreaker. This was a massive win for Milwaukee.
Player of the Game: Khris Middleton (Bucks) – A solid night for Middleton with 26 points to lead all Bucks scorers with 26 points. Middleton added a couple threes and hit a big shot down the stretch for this team. One of those nights where Milwaukee relies on Giannis Antetokounmpo and Middleton (Formerly, Jabari Parker) to carry the load. They did just that, and Bucks continue to look strong with Middleton’s leadership.
(Not) Player of the Game: Matthew Dellavedova (Bucks) – He’s back to the place he belongs. Another rough night for Delly whose been good of late. He struggled from the field making 2-of-7 shots along with spending way too much time on the court. Jason Kidd still believes that Dellavedova is a fourth quarter player which is amazing. Delly did not play well down the stretch and nearly cost Bucks a victory in this one.
Player of the Game: Damian Lillard (Blazers) – This should come as a surprise to no one that Blazers point guard Damian Lillard had another big game for Portland. Dame finished with 31 points and seven assists which is a hell of an encore to his 49 point performance versus Miami on Sunday night. I thought there were a few instances where Lillard would tie up the game and send this to overtime.
Positive: Winning West Coast Road Trip? – Bucks have an opportunity to win their fourth game in six tries out West on Wednesday night when they take on Sacramento Kings in a back-to-back to wrap up the trip. I hate to be a defeatist but .500 road trip is still a good thing even if Wednesday night is winnable. It just means Milwaukee would have to split Atlanta and Chicago this weekend. Kings lost 10 of their last 13 and haven’t beat a playoff team since mid-February.
Negative: Bucks finally created spots at the end – Maybe, this is a lesson for Jason Kidd that he cannot get too cute with his lineups. Much of the reason why Portland went on such a run was due in part to Bucks bad combination of guys on the court. I realize this is the first of four this week with Milwaukee, but at the same time, the lineup needs to be in winning form.
Next up: See above. Go Bucks.