By Dave Begel Contributing Writer Published May 01, 2015 at 3:00 PM Photography: David Bernacchi

It’s tough to decide which was the bigger shock, the season the Milwaukee Bucks had or the way they got run over by the Chicago Bulls in the sixth game of their series Thursday night.

I don’t think anybody expected this young team that had played the Bulls so tough in the first five games to get blasted out of the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Game 6. The green-clad crowd was ready for a Bucks’ victory and a Game 7 on Saturday in Chicago.

The only people who weren’t ready for it were the Bulls, a veteran team with maybe the best guard in the league in Derrick Rose.

So the season ended not with a roar but with a whimper. The Bulls were tougher, faster and smarter that the Bucks.

But that game should not take away from the incredible season that Jason Kidd and his team put together.

It started back last April when the new owners bought the team. They talked boldly about changing the culture. And then they did it.

A lackluster team that won 15 games last season won 41 this year. They were a sixth seed in the playoffs, fell down, 3-0, to the Bulls and then won the next two, including the fourth game which may well have been the most exciting in the history of this team.

The season end for Wisconsin’s big three teams all ended the same way, with losses, but with markedly different emotions.

The Brewers ended last season with a fan base that was horrified at the ineptitude of the team. People were full of wonder at how bad that team had become in such a short span of time.

The Packers ended their season with one of the most bizarre defeats in recent memory. They had a good season but their fan base was in disbelief after the loss to Seattle and remains so today.

And then there’s the Bucks, ending their season with the debacle of Thursday night.

But the distinct impression I get of the reaction of fans is almost universally positive. It’s full of praise and joy over the season, praise and surprise over the first round the playoffs and full of hope for where this franchise is headed.

In the offseason the Bucks are going to break ground for a new arena although there are still some details to work out.

They are going to get Jabari Parker back. Before he was injured he seemed on track to be the rookie of the year in the NBA. And they have a team that has more experience. Getting beat the way the did in the final game should be, and probably will be, the kind of lesson that teaches you things from the school of hard knocks.

They have a great nucleus of young players, Michael Carter-Williams, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton and John  Henson. They have depth with some veterans.

But perhaps the biggest thing they have going into the next season is an attitude that inspires confidence.

And its not just the players. From top to bottom the organization communicates a feeling that they can do good things. Nothing, they say, is beyond them. And that kind of attitude is very attractive in a sports team, and in the life of a city.

The impact that a successful team can have on the psyche of a city is well proven. Think back to when the Brewers won their division in 2011 and were in the playoffs. The excitement was palpable. People were friendlier. Differences didn’t seem nearly as important. Problems became challenges and solutions seemed to be more doable.

You get the feeling that the Bucks are headed toward much the same thing and they’re taking us along with them.

Dave Begel Contributing Writer

With a history in Milwaukee stretching back decades, Dave tries to bring a unique perspective to his writing, whether it's sports, politics, theater or any other issue.

He's seen Milwaukee grow, suffer pangs of growth, strive for success and has been involved in many efforts to both shape and re-shape the city. He's a happy man, now that he's quit playing golf, and enjoys music, his children and grandchildren and the myriad of sports in this state. He loves great food and hates bullies and people who think they are smarter than everyone else.

This whole Internet thing continues to baffle him, but he's willing to play the game as long as keeps lending him a helping hand. He is constantly amazed that just a few dedicated people can provide so much news and information to a hungry public.

Despite some opinions to the contrary, Dave likes most stuff. But he is a skeptic who constantly wonders about the world around him. So many questions, so few answers.