It’s easy to forget that just six days ago, Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo hesitated in the first game of the NBA Finals. This was a journey that started in Athens, Greece for more than two decades ago. His journey couldn’t even get started due to hyperextension of the left knee, because of which the gate of the NBA championship may not have moved.
Antetokounmpo finally played in the first game of the final against the Phoenix Suns. Less than a week later, his injury went unnoticed. On Sunday night, Antetokounmpo continued to rampage and destroy the Suns in the most important game of his life. Offensively, Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis overtook Phoenix 120-100 with 41 points in the third game, reducing the Suns’ lead to 2-1.
The final is the greatest chess game in basketball, because each team has chosen a different game strategy, from quarter to quarter and even possession of the ball. The Bucks changed their strategies according to the game. The Suns erects walls of different lengths and thicknesses to deflect Anteokunmpo. Both teams trying to optimize a single game.
The Bucks returned to Milwaukee and returned to their home court with excellent results on Antetokounmpo’s roster. Six of Milwaukee’s top seven players had an actual field goal percentage of more than 55%. The Bucks as a team achieved the best field goal percentage since Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
No one was more effective than Antetokounmpo. He attacked the rim mercilessly, shooting 41 points and converting 14 shots of 23 attempts. He was also the second in the history of the Finals to score at least 40 points and 10 rebounds in consecutive games.
Playing as playmaker and wrecking ball, Antetokounmpo has shown a trend-setting performance in his career, which reflects the length of his skills. He played intuitive and clear games, he recognized the ball skillfully, and rarely lost control. If several guards hit him, he will easily pass the ball to Middleton or Jrue, or from the inside to Pat Connaughton or Bobby Portis.
If Antetokounmpo or his teammates miss, they will enjoy the offensive crystal. His four offensive rebounds scored 10 points, including one pair and one pointers. The Bucks are now in Milwaukee for their fourth game on Wednesday (9pm EST). They know they can’t get close to 2-1 games again.
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