Raptors have no answers for over-powering Bucks
Giannis Antetokounmpo had 30 factors and 17 rebounds to steer Milwaukee 125-103 over the Toronto Raptors on Friday, placing the Bucks up 2-Zero within the best-of-seven Jap Convention last.
Now the Raptors are confronted with a mammoth process: digging themselves out of a 0-2 collection deficit. It is one thing Toronto has by no means carried out earlier than.
Kawhi Leonard had 31 factors and eight rebounds to steer the Raptors, who have been carried out in by considered one of their worst first halves of the season. They trailed by 18 factors within the first quarter. It grew to 25 factors by the second.
Kyle Lowry had 15 factors, whereas Norm Powell had his greatest sport of those playoffs with 14 factors.
Pascal Siakam, who averaged 24 factors in opposition to Milwaukee within the common season, had simply eight factors and one rebound and fouled out with 5:17 to play. Marc Gasol struggled mightily, ending with two factors on 1-for-9 capturing and searching of kinds all evening. Serge Ibaka had 10 rebounds to go together with eight factors.
Now the collection heads to Toronto for Recreation three on Sunday.
Two nights after a detailed Recreation 1 loss that left the Raptors lamenting a chance missed, Recreation 2 acquired ugly early. Antetokounmpo threw down a dunk within the opening minute, then mauled Gasol on a dunk try from behind on the Raptors’ subsequent possession, prompting “M-V-P!” chants from the Fiserv Discussion board crowd. The massive block appeared to shake Gasol, who missed his first 4 pictures, and smacked his arms in frustration when he fumbled a go.
A George Hill basket capped a 12-Zero run gave the Bucks an 18-point lead, and so they roared into the second up 35-21.
The Raptors’ struggling continued. When Lowry missed on a free throw, a big part of followers chanted “Playoff Lowry!” And when Lowry fouled Ilyasova with 1:02 to play, the Raptors level guard took a seat with a hard fourth foul, and Ilyasova’s free throw gave the Bucks a 23-point lead. Milwaukee took a 64-39 benefit into the halftime break.
Antetokounmpo transformed a three-point play to start the third, stretching the Bucks’ result in a game-high 28 factors. However the Raptors outscored the Bucks the remainder of the quarter, slicing the distinction to 13 factors a few occasions. Seldom-used Jodie Meeks scored on a three-pointer on the buzzer and the Raptors trailed Milwaukee with 95-78.
The identical rowdy part of followers serenaded Leonard throughout fourth-quarter free throws with “Future Clipper!” in reference to rumours that the Raptors star is headed residence to L.A. to play subsequent season.
Leonard’s three-point play pulled Toronto inside 15 factors with 6:10 to play, however Antetokounmpo was fouled by Leonard the subsequent time down the ground for his personal three-point play. Hill’s three-pointer with 4:06 to play all however sealed the Bucks’ victory, and each coaches went deep into their benches quickly after.
Raptors coach Nick Nurse was requested pre-game what’s simpler: making ready for a sport after a win or after a loss?
“The losses ought to provide you with an edge and it ought to provide you with a dedication factor, too,” Nurse stated. “However within the playoffs, it does not bode very effectively should you lose two in a row. So it places slightly bit extra warmth on you to get the win carried out on the second sport.”
That warmth has been cranked up a pair hundred levels. Of the seven different occasions the Raptors have dropped the primary two video games of a playoff collection, they’ve gone on to lose all seven collection. 4 of the collection have been sweeps.
The beginning of the sport was a digital reversal of two nights earlier, when the Raptors had the Bucks — rusty maybe from their six days off between video games — on their heels from tipoff. The Raptors led for 37 of the 48 minutes in a 108-100 loss, falling aside in a second half that noticed each Raptor not named Lowry or Leonard shoot 1-for-23.
There was zero rust on Friday.
The Bucks outrebounded Toronto 53-40, two nights after beating the Raptors 60-46 on the boards. The Bucks turned the ball over simply seven occasions, in comparison with 14 for the Raptors, costing them 19 factors.
The Bucks received a league-high 60 video games within the common season, two greater than the second-seeded Raptors. The winner of this collection will have homecourt within the NBA Finals in opposition to both the Golden State Warriors or the Portland Path Blazers.
The Raptors are taking part in their second Jap Convention last in franchise historical past, whereas the Bucks are making their first look within the convention last in 18 years.
The Bucks have had a countdown going for the reason that playoffs started: what number of victories earlier than they hoist the Larry O’Brien trophy because the NBA champion? Friday made it six extra wins.
Recreation Four is Tuesday at Scotiabank Area.
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