After the news that Bucks forward Khris Middleton would miss the entire Celtics series, most had Boston as the better team. Two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo just walked into TD Garden as a one-man show, dropped a 24-point triple-double on the Celtics’ heads, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown laid eggs offensively, and we’re staring at a 1-0 Bucks series lead. Shocking.
Bucks Win!! pic.twitter.com/7RzFFT87JT
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) May 1, 2022
Thanks for coming out pic.twitter.com/1WI74QtJOt
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) May 1, 2022
No one showed up for the Celtics today and that happens, but what’s most notable is that Giannis really didn’t play his best game. An inefficient night making just nine of his 25 field goal attempts, however he was able to operate as the Bucks’ full-time playmaker with 12 assists. Milwaukee needs every bit of that effort to get guys open the remainder of the series.
The Bucks managed to make just 12 threes on the road…and still won. That’s how bad Boston played today.
that works. pic.twitter.com/q5LCh4K5zK
— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) May 1, 2022
Is it possible this performance was due to a “trap game” having just come off a clean sweep of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving’s Brooklyn Nets? Can’t make too many excuses for a Boston team that knows all about playoff ups and down, but we also can’t ignore human nature.
Giannis filled up the stat sheet in game 1 with 24 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists. Tatum poured in 21 points of his own while the next highest outputs on the roster were Jaylen Brown and veteran big man Al Horford, who scored 12 each. That’s not getting it done in the playoffs.
Jrue Holiday, who’s now filling the role of Giannis’ “Robin”, showed up big time with 25 points. Milwaukee will look to Holiday all series to take some pressure off their Finals MVP making sure that stifling Celtics defense can’t load up on one player.
A gut punch of a loss for the Celtics in this one and they’ll look to even the series Tuesday night back at TD Garden. This series has just gotten juicy.