The Pels nearly ruined a 29-point lead this Friday night against the Bucks. After a top-notch first half, NO started to stutter at the end of the third quarter and Milwaukee came back to six points, not enough however to achieve the heist since the Pelicans, in the wake of a Ball- quartet Bledsoe-Ingram-Zion, who each scored 20 or more points, are barely doing.
We had the right to two faces of the Bucks this Friday night against the Pels. First off, the game begins with a most excruciating first half from the Deers, possibly one of the worst of the Budenholzer era. It’s simple, the Pels will dominate from head to toe Milwaukee, so that they will take a lead of 29 points in the second quarter, the worst deficit suffered by the Bucks in the first half in three years. 24 record first minutes, in a bad sense, for Giannis and his troops who, usually so serious and organized, played basketball worthy of the best fairs in France. Between open shots that do not fit and loss of balls that would blow your coach a cable one Sunday afternoon, we had the right to a beautiful festival of Milwaukee version bullshit. And to drive the point home, Pels side it has never slowed down and, above all, some players have decided to leave the game of their season starting with the former house player Eric Bledsoe. Bled ‘apparently had the seum to be transferred and he showed it this Friday night by pulling out a thundering game that would almost make Jon Horst regret having dropped 15 draft rounds and his mother to get Jrue Holiday back. The bodybuilder leader has played as we hoped to see him play in the last two Bucks Playoffs campaigns: 25 points, 7 3-point wins (equalizes his career record), 5 assists and 1 block. Clearly, Mini-LeBron had things to prove against his former teammates and if he played like this every night, he could finally earn that ridiculous nickname that has stuck with him since his rookie season.
But if Bledsoe had been the only one to pull off the game in his life it wouldn’t be funny, and the elder Ball also decided to move on a bit by releasing his best performance of the season. As his name appears more and more in transfer rumors, Zo wanted to remind David Griffin and his team that he, too, shouldn’t be taken lightly. He chose the perfect time and place since in full prime time in a match broadcast across the country, Ball dropped 27 points (two points from his career record), 7 parking warheads (career record matched) , 8 assists and 2 rebounds. Mike Budenholzer certainly wasn’t thinking, waking up this morning, taking fourteen long-range shots from Ball and Bledsoe, but life is full of surprises. This shooting of the parking lot allows in any case the Pels to explode the defense of the Bucks and the men of Stan Van Gundy then return to the locker room the duty accomplished.
Except that, in the NBA there is not one but two halves to play and this concept apparently has difficulty entering the brains of Louisiana players. Because even with a lead of 28 points 5 minutes from the end of the third quarter, NO will succeed in the feat of sweating until the final whistle. On the other hand, the Bucks have finally decided to play basket ball by planting 44 points in the third quarter, tying their record of points in a quarter this season, on the head of birds who finally realize what playing a two-time first team from the East really meant. At the start of the last quarter, the lead is therefore only 14 points and fans of the Bucks dream of a comeback of madness especially when their favorite Greek also decides to play as the MVP that he is. While he had, like his team, suffered badly in the first half, Giannis woke up in the second half. You take 9, the number of points recorded by the double MVP during the first act, you add a 2 in front and you have the number of points scored by the cushy in second. The Greek Freak finished the game with 38 points plus a great stress inflicted on all of Louisiana at the end of the game. The Bucks are not going to mess around and will push and push to come back to less than 10 points with seven minutes left but New Orleans will not let it go and will retaliate to all the assaults launched by Cream City. Brandon Ingram was very important as he scored 12 of his 28 points in the last quarter and kept the lead by ten points for a while. One last scare at the end of the match with a deficit that will drop to 6 points but the Pelicans are serious on the throwing line and do not let victory escape them. Second win in a row for the men of Stan Van Gundy, synonymous with the first series of victory this season, the Pels who are only two wins from the Playoffs in a very, very close Western Conference and a race for the play-in that risks to be tense until the end of the season. It should be noted that JJ Redick did not play a minute this evening, while no injury had been announced concerning the 36-year-old rear.
The Pels unrolled… then choke… then held to go for the victory. Second win in a row but above all a good performance against one of the big teams in the League. We want to see these Pelicans more often because the talent is clearly there and when they are all in good shape, like last night, they are just impressive at ease.