The No. 1 Milwaukee Bucks found a way to win Game 1 despite sluggish play for much of the game.
Friday night, however, there was nothing sluggish about their effort in the opening 24 minutes as they played suffocating defense against Kawhi Leonard, and the rest of the Toronto Raptors roster, while lighting up the scoreboard in the offensive end to take a 64-39 lead into the locker room at the halftime break.
The Bucks’ bench was superb in the first half as Ersan Ilyasova and Malcolm Brogdon combined for 27 points on 10-of-14 shooting to help the East’s top seed put themselves in a great position to pick up their second straight win in this series.
CBS Sports will be following along live with Game 2 from Milwaukee.
How to watch Raptors vs. Bucks Game 2
- Date: Friday, May 17
- Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
- Location: Fiserv Forum — Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- TV channel: TNT
- Live stats: GameTracker
- Streaming: FuboTV (watch for free)
- Odds: Bucks -6.5 (Over/Under 216)
Odds and Analysis
Check Sportsline’s NBA pick sheet for all your daily odds.
Raptors: Toronto controlled Game 1 for the first three quarters before imploding in the fourth quarter. Toronto’s main issue was that they simply couldn’t grab offensive rebounds, with the Bucks outrebounding the Raptors 15-8 for the game. Another issue Toronto had was its efficiency — outside of Lowry, the Raptors combined to go 24-of-77 from the field (31.1 percent). Kawhi Leonard was also a disappointment, going 10-for-26 from the field with just two points in the fourth quarter.
Bucks: Milwaukee should feel pretty good about itself, because it played a less-than-perfect game and still escaped with a victory in Game 1. Antetokounmpo wasn’t dominant — his 24 points and 14 rebounds were rather quiet — but role players such as Lopez and Malcolm Brogdon — 15 points on 5-of-9 from the field — stepped up to lead Milwaukee to victory. It should be interesting to see if Mike Budenholzer starts Brogdon after he posted a game-high +18 plus/minus rating in Game 1.
Game prediction, pick
Despite the Raptors’ collapse in Game 1, they were the better team in the opening game of this series. With Game 2 virtually being a must-win for the Raptors, I’d assume Toronto pulls out the victory. It’s hard to imagine Leonard shooting poorly from the field for a third consecutive game and he’s more aware than anybody else how damaging a 2-0 deficit would be to Toronto in this series.