Jrue Holiday knows what everyone wants from him. No one has to tell him to be more aggressive or keep shooting, so that his shots will eventually succeed. But Shawn has been training his son long enough that he knows how considerate he is to himself. After playing in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, Holliday had only 33% of his field goals (69 shots and 23 points), including his poor performance of 4 of 20 shots in Game 4.
As Jrue pointed out, his father was a bit biased. This makes him very nervous, but what is important here is the message that Shawn conveys that he needs to stay on track. How many star players can fight on the court like Jrue Holiday did on Saturday night without feeling frustrated? How many people will shrug their shoulders after the 4 out of 20 shooting disappointment, happy for the team’s victory?
Holiday played well in the backcourt against Phoenix’s Chris Paul and Booker. In the 268 matchups where Holiday was Booker or Paul’s main defender, they had an average of only 22 points per 100 possessions. The other guards of the Bucks averaged 39.7 points per 100 possessions. The holiday forced Paul to make 10 turnovers and Booker at eight.
Paul narrowed the gap to 120-119 with 56 seconds remaining, Booker had a chance to place the Suns in lead. When he drove past Tucker and in the Bucks’ defensive teeth, Antetokounmpo turned and prevented him from moving forward, and Booker had no choice but to turn his back to him.
Holiday watched the development of the game and defended Paul with a three-point arc. He can’t leave too early, otherwise, Booker would’ve found Paul empty. But he also can’t be late, otherwise, Booker would spot an opening clearly.
As often happened in this series, Holiday chose the perfect timing. When Booker spun, he ducked, tore the ball from him without fouling, and ran into the sprint as Antetokounmpo was sprinting at full force and was ready for the alley-oop.
In the stands, Shawn and Toya Holiday watched the key scene with a small group of Buck’s family and friends. Considering that their son has just performed well in the Bucks’ best performance, they are happy but not overly happy. In a major playoff game so far, they won the game getting close to their first title since 1971 in their sixth game in Milwaukee on Tuesday night.
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