MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Milwaukee Bucks want to build momentum in their thrilling comeback and the Golden State Warriors are set to leave behind a disappointing defeat as both teams try to wrap up their two-round series.
Both are holding a 3-2 lead in their respective series and are home for Game 6 on Friday. The defending NBA champions, the Bucks, won 14 points in Boston on Wednesday night, 110-107 in the fourth quarter deficit, the Warriors wasted. Chance to close the series with a 134-95 loss at Memphis.
Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo said “after all we can’t score too high” after winning Buck’s fifth game. “Obviously, it’s good to win the game, go home and feel good, but it’s not over yet.”
Although Milwaukee is enjoying emotional victories and Golden State is recording big losses, the trend in these series indicates that the Warriors should be more comfortable going home.
The home court advantage didn’t mean much in the Bucks-Celtics series. The road team has won 3 of their 5 matches including the last 2 matches.
Over the first five games of the other three second round series, the home team held a record of 14-1. The Warriors won 2-0 at home against the Grizzlies after winning 142-112 in Game 3 and 101-98 in Game 4.
History suggests that the biased nature of the Golden State’s Game 5 defeat should not have a carryover effect. The Warriors are the sixth team to lose more than 39 points in a playoff game that hasn’t ended the series in the last decade. Four of the five previously lost teams won the next game.
Warriors guard Klay Thompson said, “Well, it’s not good to lose as many as we do. “In the end, it’s just a loss, mentally erasing it and reminding you who you are. You play with 100% hard work on Friday, and I love our chances.”
Grizzlies also have reason to be confident that Ja Morant will likely be out for the rest of the postseason with a bruise on his right knee. The Grizzlies have a 1-1 record against the Warriors since Morant’s injury and are 21-6 in the games the All-Star Guard missed this season.
“We know how to respond.” Grizzlies guard/forward Dylan Brooks said. “We know how to play better with each other than any team in the NBA.”
In the Celtics-Bucks series, teams alternately won their first five games. The Celtics season will depend on a pattern that continues on Friday.
The series is already full of comebacks. The Celtics will rally from a 3-2 deficit and hope to win a potential Game 7 game in Boston on Sunday.
Celtics manager Ime Udoka said after Game 5 loss: “We had a golden opportunity. “That’s the story here. It’s going to be harder now. We have to go for a second straight. But what we’ve been doing with this series and throughout this season is that we was brought back to life when it was tested.”
Celtic from Buck
Bugs Lead 3-2. Match 6, 7:30pm EDT, ESPN
— Need to Know: The Bucks lead the series with a comeback in Game 5 as Bobby Portis scored the lead on the back of Antetokounmpo’s missed free throw with 15 seconds left. Jrue Holiday secured the win with blocks and steals in the last 10 seconds. Antetokounmpo scored 40 points. The team leading the fourth quarter has lost their last three games of the series.
— Stay tuned: rebounds. In the last two games, the Bucks have overtaken the Celtics 97-74 and have a 32-18 lead on their second chance point.
— INJURY WATCH: Bucks F Khris Middleton missed eight consecutive playoff games with a medial collateral ligament sprain in his left knee. Celtics F/C Robert Williams III missed two games in a row due to left knee pain.
— Pressure is on: Celtics F Jayson Tatum. The three-time All-Star was productive, scoring 34 points in Game 5 and 30 points in Game 4. However, he has only scored 5 of 27 points in a 3-point range in the last 3 games. The first two games in this series. For the Celtics to win this series, Tatum will need to restore 3-point accuracy.
The Warriors lead 3-2. Match 6, 10pm EDT, ESPN.
— What you need to know: Golden State recorded 22 turnovers, scoring 29 Grizzlies points in Game 5 of Memphis. All of the Warriors’ starters received minus plus minus ratings. Thompson’s minus 45 rating, along with Andre Drummond’s minus 45 against Milwaukee in 2019, is the worst plus or minus tie in playoff games in 25 years.
— Stay tuned: Memphis took the lead in outbounding the Warriors for the first time in the series with a 55-37 lead, using a size advantage with Steven Adams at 6′ 11 inches. Grizzlies led 18-4 on the attacking board, leading to a 24-5 scoring advantage on the second chance point.
— INJURY WATCH: Golden State’s Otto Porter Jr. missed the second half of Game 5 due to right foot pain. His condition is uncertain. … Warriors manager Steve Kerr has yet to be decided, but he was able to recover from a two-game absence due to COVID-19 in Game 6 time. He first needs two negative tests. … Morant has missed two games and it is doubtful that he will be able to return this postseason.
— The pressure is put on: warriors. Memphis are the youngest team to make it to this round in 25 years, so pushing the series into their 6th game already is a big deal with Morant injured. Each team had an overwhelming victory in each of the other three games, determined by a five-point difference or less. But over the last two games without Morant, Memphis was ahead in all but the last 45.7 seconds of Game 5.
Associated Press Sports writers Kyle Hightower, Janie McCauley and Teresa M. Walker contributed to this report.
More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/nba and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports