10 Numbers From The Game 2 Win
Eric Bledsoe floated in a three after the buzzer to end the first quarter. It was easily waved off. He smiled all the way to the bench.
He had started the night by hitting a couple threes in the first few minutes and he did not look like a guy who was concerned that the Bucks would need those three points that did not count at the end of the first quarter. They had plenty in reserve, like usual.
Here are 10 numbers from the 120–99 win.
2005. The Pistons flattered Ersan by mimicking his default charge-drawing defensive strategy for much of the first three quarters. And they found some success, but never quite lived up to the original, as Ersan showed when he tempted Andre Drummond into running at him. And like always, like since about the moment the Bucks drafted him in 2005, Ersan got up just fine, while Drummond limped back the other way.
4. Pat Connaughton blocked a career-high four shots, and all four of them were on jumpers. Three of them were on three-pointers. He got Ellington twice. He got Kennard twice. The Pistons had a plan to get threes up, and they did, 36 of them. But they only hit 12. Kennard hit 4–5 from range when he wasn’t getting blocked by Pat Connaughton. Ellington knocked in 2–5 when he wasn’t getting blocked by Connaughton. (By the way, Connaughton himself hit 8–10 shots from the field and 2–3 from three on the night.)
11. In fact, somehow six Bucks recorded at least one block, and Brook Lopez was not one of them. George Hill had two! Every Bucks guard (Hill, Connaughton, Brown, Bledsoe) had at least one.
1:08. Giannis scored 11 points in the first 1:08 of the second half after scoring 10 points in the first half. That put the Bucks up 65–62 and my did they ever not look back.
0. Giannis picked up his third foul midway through the second quarter and stayed in the game but was relatively quiet the rest of the half. He blew the game open in the third quarter with 13 points and did so while committing all of zero fouls.
3. Giannis went one-on-three for this and-one and would the other two Pistons on the court have done anything to change what happened?
32. The Bucks racked up 32 assists. (Khris Middleton led the way with a quiet eight.)
29. Giannis played less than 30 minutes for the second straight game. And after two games, Pat Connaughton leads the team in minutes at 29.5 per game. All eight regulars are averaging between 20 and 30 minutes.
2. In the dominant third quarter, as a timeout was called, Middleton lofted a shot, and Drummond did the thing old KG thing where a guy blocks it before it goes in. The ball went back out to Middleton, who shot again, and Drummond tried to do it again, but he timed it wrong and he landed as the ball sailed above him. That is how it is going.
3. Bledsoe led the team with three offensive rebounds and three steals. He also led the team with two loose balls recovered. On top of hitting shots and distributing, he ranks among the league leaders in playoff hustle. Good sign.