The Bucks were just one win away from advancing to the Eastern Conference finals going into Friday night’s game, complete with a chance to refresh the #BucksInSix battlecry, this time against the two-seed Boston Celtics. But despite another impressive outing from the Greek Freak, Milwaukee fell to Boston to even the series at three games a piece, 108-95.
While winning in front of a home crowd would have been in style, it’s not all she wrote for Giannis and company as the Bucks have another chance to steal a game on the East Coast, which would close out the series and set up a matchup with the Miami Heat, where the winner would then advance to the NBA Finals.
Here’s our breakdown of the Bucks’ crushing loss to the Boston Celtics by the numbers:
44 – Points for Giannis
Since the beginning of the playoffs last year, Giannis has played especially well in close out games. And despite the losing effort, tonight was no exception. The Greek Freak led the Bucks with 44 points on just 30 shots, including two three-point field goals out of his three attempts. Last night’s loss certainly did not fall on Giannis, but was a reminder that he is just one of five players on the court for Milwaukee at any given time.
51 – Points off three-pointers for Boston
The Celtics were criticized for blowing their big lead against Milwaukee for Game 5, in part because they attempted zero threes in their terrible fourth quarter. In Game 6, the Celtics reverted back to their normal selves and kept shooting from long range, and unfortunately for Milwaukee, they did so at a very efficient rate. Boston made 17 three-pointers for a total of 51 points, compared to Milwaukee’s 21 points off three-pointers. Boston’s shooting from beyond the arc was perhaps the biggest factor for their win.
1 – Bucket for Al Horford
Veteran Al Horford has been a X-factor for the Boston Celtics all playoff. Horford has put up big numbers despite not being the Celtics’ first or second option. Tonight though, Milwaukee was able to hold Horford to just one field goal for just two points. Credit to the Bucks for limiting Horford – but it’s scary to think how bad the loss could have been if Al Horford had another big game.
-29 – Plus-minus for Grayson Allen
Perhaps the ironic home crowd booing is starting to get to Grayson Allen. The former Duke star looked like an All-Star against the Bulls in the first round. However, he has struggled against Boston. On Friday night, Allen was just 1-for-7, which contributed to his -29 plus-minus for the game. If Allen was a hot as he was against Chicago, Game 6 could have easily went the other way.
46 – Points for Jayson Tatum
While Milwaukee’s former Dukie struggled on Friday, Boston’s surely did not. Jayson Tatum looked relatively underwhelming throughout this series but last night he had his best game against Milwaukee. Tatum led all scorers with 46 points and shot nearly 50 percent from long range. The Bucks have defended him well in the past, but they certainly didn’t do so last night.
14 – Clutch free throws for Giannis
As we mentioned before, Giannis played great on Friday night. Although his teammates weren’t feeling it, the Freak’s clutch muscle flexed throughout the game. Giannis made 14 of his 15 free throws, which is an amazing rate for even Pat Connaughton much less a player who gets taunted by opposing fan bases for his poor free throw shooting. His performance at the line definitely gave us Game 6 of the 2021 NBA Finals vibes.
14 – Points for Pat Connaughton
Pat Connaughton was the only player for the Bucks to have a positive plus-minus for the night. Milwaukee outscored Boston whenever Pat was on the floor, and it’s likely because Connaughton was an efficient 6-for-8 in Game 6 during his 33 minutes played.
11,000 – Fans rooting on the home team in Deer District
Deer District saw its biggest crowd of the year during Game 6. With a capacity set at 11,000, fans without tickets to the game packed the grounds outside Fiserv Forum to still be part of the action. Even though they weren’t able to cheer on the team to victory this time around, it was a glorious and joyous scene – until the end of the evening, when nearby gun violence marred the night. Milwaukee: We can and must do better for each other.
4-1 – On the road this postseason
Last night’s loss was certainly crushing for any Milwaukee fan, but the series is far from over. The Bucks need as many wins today as they did yesterday to close out the series, and the team has proven they can be as good on the road as they are at home. In fact, the Bucks have performed even better on the road this postseason. Defeating Chicago during both games at the United Center and stealing Games 1 and 5 from Boston at the TD Garden, the Bucks are currently 4-1 on the road – and fans should certainly like the team’s odds at going 5-1 by the end of the weekend.