The Bucks have been the best team in the league all season but they still have plenty of work to do in the playoffs. Here’s why they can get it down.
The Milwaukee Bucks have been the best team in the NBA this season, yet still are not considered favorites to win the championship in June. Perhaps it’s because their success seemingly came out of nowhere or because they lack the star power of other contenders or just because it’s hard to shake the largely held assumption that the Warriors are destined to win it all yet again. In spite of the lack of belief in Milwaukee as a legitimate title contender, they are nevertheless real threats to win it all this season. Here are five reasons why.
5. Giannis Antetokounmpo
All year long, Giannis has been an unstoppable force on offense. He’s averaging 27 points per game while shooting nearly 65 percent within the 3-point arc, and 69 percent in the restricted area. That latter number is particularly concerning for opposing teams as the restricted area is where he takes over 70 percent of his shots! It’s no secret what Giannis wants to do — drive and attack the rim before overpowering and outmaneuvering defenders in the paint — but not since Shaquille O’Neal at the turn of the century has a player been so predictable yet so unstoppable near the basket.
It almost feels as if there’s simply no way to stop him and you just have to resign yourself to him getting his 25 or 30 points while hoping to find a way to slow down his teammates. Antetokounmpo has also blossomed as a distributor this season, leading the team in assists as well as in points and rebounds. Any team seeking to advance past the Bucks will have to find a way to contain Giannis, something no opponent has been able to consistently do this season.