Five Things to Know About the Bucks’ Losing Weekend
Milwaukee Bucks have lost back-to-back games for the first time since their losing streak in February. Everyone lost their minds back then, so, I hope we’re okay with two losses. They’ll try to avoid the third one tonight against Los Angeles. There were some things to take away from both of Milwaukee’s losses coming against Boston and New York. Does the Knicks one even count since the Bucks rested half their guys? It still counts, but in a lot of ways, that’s a throwaway loss.
1. Saturday night was fucking fun – Look, I love watching Giannis, Khris, Jrue ball out but something is special about watching guys get their shot at the big stage. Thanasis Antetokounmpo was so much fun even if he couldn’t dribble the ball to save his soul. Jordan Nwora and Sam Merrill both showed why they’re guys to keep an eye on in the coming years. I do wonder if Saturday gave Mike Budenholzer any ideas with Nwora and Merrill. Maybe a few minutes a game to see if they’re warm or not? We’ll see.
2. Not having P.J. Tucker and Bobby Portis really hurts Milwaukee’s second unit – In classic Bucks form, P.J. Tucker hurt his calf, and he’ll be out for a few games at least. Calf injuries can be nagging ones, so, let’s hope it’s not that. Portis is out due to health and safety protocols. We do not know if it’s COVID or not for the Bucks’ big man. What does the bench look for Milwaukee then? It probably means more Merrill, Nwora, and Thanasis. It would also not shock me if Pat Connaughton saw even more run off the bench either. Let’s hope these guys can get back soon.
3. Three-point defense is still a lingering issue for Milwaukee – Bucks have not been beaten by a hot team from three in awhile. But now and again, it hits you right in the face. That’s what the Boston game was for Milwaukee. Celtics drilled the Bucks due to their hot shooting from the outside. Those nights can happen with Mike Budenholzer’s defense. They haven’t happened as often as they did last season, but it’s still in play every game that Milwaukee plays.
4. Probably don’t want to see Boston in round one – On The Daily Tap podcast last week, I ranked Boston in my top three of teams I wanted to face in the first round. As Mitch pointed out when we did Tapping The Keg podcast, that was a dumb take. He’s right. I’m not worried that Milwaukee would go out in round one against Boston, but they’re going to be a very tough out. Give me Atlanta or Indiana, please. Honestly, New York was down on my list because dealing with a Thibs team for four or five games just sucks, but after they nearly lost to Milwaukee’s B team, they’re also on the list. If the playoffs started today, it would be Bucks-Hawks.
5. Smart move by Budenholzer to rest the team – People love to shit on Bud, so, I’ll compliment him. Made a ton of sense resting the guys on Saturday. They have four games next week including another back-to-back on Friday and Saturday. Hopefully, this will equal fresh legs tonight against the Los Angeles Clippers who are playing their best basketball of the season. It will not be an easy one in LA tonight.