Tune-In Tidbits: TNT Tuesday, May 4, 2021
Get ready for Tuesday's TNT doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.
Brian Martin, for NBA.com
Nets (43-22) at Bucks (40-24)
• This is a rematch of Sunday’s incredible duel between Giannis Antetokounmpo (49 points) and Kevin Durant (42 points) as Milwaukee prevailed 117-114. Giannis scored his season high on 21-for-48 shooting from the field and 4-for-8 from 3-point range; it is one of only two games this season (Jamal Murray had the other) when a player has made at least 21 field goals. The last such game prior to this season came on Nov. 18, 2018 (Kemba Walker).
• Durant matched his season high with 42 points in Sunday’s loss, marking his third 42-point game of the season and his second in a row. Since returning from a thigh contusion of April 25, Durant has averaged 33.5 points on 57.6% shooting from the field, 56.7% from 3-point range and 91.7% from the free throw line.
• With Milwaukee’s win on Sunday, the season series is now tied 1-1, with both games being decided by a single possession (two-point win by Brooklyn, three-point win by Milwaukee). Tuesday’s matchup will determine the tiebreaker if it is needed at the conclusion of the regular season. The Nets lead the Bucks by 2 1/2 games, but a Milwaukee win today would close the gap to one game in the loss column.
• Milwaukee is the only team in the East in the top 10 for both offensive efficiency (116.1) and defensive efficiency (109.8), joining three top-ten teams in the West for offensive/defensive efficiency (Clippers, Suns, Jazz). Jrue Holiday was the primary defender on Kyrie Irving in Sunday night’s win, guarding him for 6:37 (57% of Kyrie’s offensive matchup time) and holding Irving to just five points (25% of his total points that night).
• The Bucks (119.3) and Nets (118.7) rank first and second, respectively, in points per game this season, as both teams are on pace to set franchise records in scoring. The last team to average at least 119 points per game over the course of an NBA season was the 1990-91 Denver Nuggets (119.9 PPG).
Raptors (27-38) at Clippers (42-22)
• The Clippers hope to snap a three-game losing streak and break a tie with the Denver Nuggets for the No. 3 spot in the Western Conference. The last time the Clippers lost at least four straight was Jan 10-18, 2019 when they dropped five in a row. During this losing streak, the Clippers have been held to 102.7 points per game, with Paul George averaging 18 points on 32.1% shooting over three games and Kawhi Leonard appearing in only one game.
• The Raptors seek their second consecutive win in Los Angeles as they defeated the Lakers 121-114 on Sunday behind a combined 76 points from Pascal Siakam (39) and Kyle Lowry (37) — which were season-high scoring performances from both.
• The Raptors are third in the NBA for most 3-pointers made, averaging 14.7 per game. However, two of their top shooters — Fred VanVleet (3.3) and Gary Trent Jr. (2.6) — are out and Toronto needs to find another way to score the 39.6% of their points that typically come from 3-pointers.
• The Clippers rank fifth in 3-pointers made (14.4 per game) and are shooting them at a historic rate (41.6%). LA’s 3-point accuracy is on pace to tie the 2015-16 Warriors (41.6%) for the second-highest 3-point percentage by a team in league history, trailing only the 1996-97 Hornets (42.8%)
• Toronto’s defense generates a large part of their offense as well, including 14.0 ppg from fast breaks (eighth in the league and 12.5% of their total, which is fifth highest in the league). They also lead the league in scoring off turnovers, averaging 18.9 ppg, which makes up 16.9% of their total points (also first in the league). Without VanVleet’s league-leading 3.9 deflections per game, it might be tough for the Raptors to grab any steals from the disciplined Clippers, who have the eighth-lowest turnover percentage in the league (13.3%).