Look at this defense on the pick and roll. Lopez stops the penetration and Holiday is quick to get out of that screen. Great activity by both players, and once it gets to a 1 on 1, Jrue is absolutely attached to Kyrie, forcing a contested jumper and a bad miss.
And watching this whole possession you’ll understand why this game ended with the score in the low 80s. Look at the multiple deflections, the aggressiveness, and ultimately the block, to force a 24 second violation as the crowd goes crazy.
The game ended that way as well. Scramble situation, great double team on Irving, and they made Bruce Brown beat them which if you’re the Bucks, that’s exactly what you want, as this wild shot hits nothing but the backboard.
Milwaukee somehow survived, but it definitely wasn’t pretty, and if you ask me I’m afraid that it’s hard to sustain as well.
Let me go through some clips and explain exactly what I mean. What up everybody, my name is Stefan and this is Heat Check. Let’s get into it.
Starting off with what I loved from the game.
There were multiple instances of suffocating defense, and part of the reason why KD and Kyrie shot 39 and 41% respectively is exactly that.
Brook Lopez had 6 blocks in this game, and the perimeter defenders did a good job of pressuring and funneling guys towards him, so as you can see this sequence here, Irving has Holiday on him the whole time, so he’s not really able to see Brook coming to help. And as he flips it up, Lopez is there for the block.
And as always I gotta give credit to PJ Tucker for fighting hard against possibly the greatest pure scorer the NBA has seen. Stays with him right here the whole time, goes up to contest and you see the result.
But this is also where we get to a grey area in the game.
Check out this drive for example, where we can clearly see the bump by Tucker. Last night this was a miss and play on, but we saw these being called in Brooklyn so PJ was constantly in foul trouble.
This subtle bump right here by Jrue as well. Disrupts the rhythm of Irving, and even tho overall I loved this defense both from Holiday as well as Lopez, I’m afraid that they could be called on the Nets home court.
But I never wanna comment on officiating so let’s move on. Instead, check out some of the missed shots by Brooklyn.
A lot of these as you can see are wide open looks, that they usually are able to knock down.
Especially when we talk about one of the best shooters in the league Joe Harris.
Like, look at these. The Bucks really dodged a bullet in this game, as I really don’t see Joe going 1-11 on shots like these again in the series. Culminating with this last one with under a minute to go. He’ll never be more open than this. Wow.
Anyway, a good thing for Milwaukee is the fact that Chris Middleton finally made his presence felt. After the abysmal shooting of 6 for 23 and 7 for 20 in the first 2 games, he exploded for 35 points on 48% shooting.
On this pick and roll with Giannis, Brooklyn wasn’t switching, to keep the primary big on Antetokounmpo. So with the defender trailing him, Khris just raises up and hits the midrange shot.
Again in the 4th, Blake gives him cushion, to defend the roll, and Middleton uses that to swish a clutch shot with the game on the line.
And you know you have it going when you raise up above the long arms of KD and knock down a three in his face, and especially in transition, on a semi fast break, stopping on a dime and shooting a heat check to send a crowd into a frenzy.
And the greek freak...maaan I could make a dedicated 1 hour video solely about the blessing and the curse of having him on the team.
I’ll just explain that in under a minute. You have moments like these in transition where he looks unstoppable. Dunking all over the defense while guys just bounce off of him.
But then in the half court, look at this absolutely mind boggling sequence of him just dribbling around going back and forth and back and forth which ultimately ends up with a jump ball.
As you watch some of these bad looking possessions I’m not going to overcomplicate things and say that Giannis is at his best when he’s used as a screener, so if Im Budenholzer that’s what I'm doing. Either run a pick and roll with him and Middleton or him and Holiday, and make things happen from there.
As for right now, as a neutral NBA fan, and one that’s always against superteams, I’m just happy that this series is getting longer. That’s all I need to enjoy at this moment.
That’s it for now, subscribe and talk to you in the next one. Peace out.
11 Ιούν 2021