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Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks Pick & Prediction MAY 13TH 2022

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Logo Milwaukee Bucks

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The Milwaukee Bucks will get an opportunity on their home floor to close out the second-seeded Boston Celtics when the tightly contested best-of-seven Eastern Conference semifinal series continues Friday night.

The defending NBA champions used last-second heroics from Bobby Portis and Jrue Holiday, on top of a 40-point effort from Giannis Antetokounmpo, to pull out a 110-107 Game 5 win at Boston on Wednesday to take a 3-2 series lead.

With the teams having alternated wins and losses through five games, the scene shifts back to Milwaukee, where the Celtics were last seen evening the series for a second time with a 116-108 victory.

Even in losing three of five games, the Celtics have outscored the Bucks by four points and have averaged a 15.5-point margin of victory. But it's been third-seeded Milwaukee that's walked away with two- and three-point triumphs in the series' two tightest games in Game 3 and 5, respectively.

"Playoffs are all about moments," said Portis, whose offensive rebound and follow shot with 11 seconds remaining provided the difference-making points in Game 5. "It's not about how many shots you make. It's not about how many points you score. It's about moments. We got a lot of guys on this team that can have moments."

Most of those moments in Game 5 belonged to Antetokounmpo, whose 27 shots included a critical 3-pointer with 1:40 to go and Milwaukee down by six. He was fouled on what would have been his 28th attempt, setting up the two free throws that later put the Bucks ahead -- one that he made and the other that Portis followed in.

The Celtics have run different players at the two-time league MVP, including Grant Williams, Al Horford and Jaylen Brown.

While neither Antetokounmpo nor Brown, who had 26 points Wednesday, appear to have been physically affected by the battle, Williams and Horford showed some wear and tear at the offensive end in Game 5, combining for eight points on 4-for-10 shooting in a total of 71 1/2 minutes.

Without injured big man Robert Williams, who has missed the last two games with swelling in his surgically repaired left knee, the Celtics have been limited in their defensive options against the 6-foot-11 Bucks star. Williams will be a game-time decision for Game 6.

The Celtics blamed only themselves, not Williams' injury, for their failure to hold onto a 14-point lead on their home court Wednesday.

"We made it tougher on ourselves now," Celtics coach Ime Udoka said after the loss. "It'll make it sweeter when we bounce back, but we gave up a golden opportunity."

The visiting team has now won three of the five games in the series. The Bucks realize that home court guarantees nothing in Game 6.

"At the end of the day, can't get too high, can't get too low," Antetokounmpo said. "We were up seven or 10 the previous game. We lost it. They were up. They lost this one.

"It's great to go back home and feel good about ourselves, but the job is not done."

--Field Level Media

Boston Celtics
Milwaukee Bucks

Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks Recap MAY 9TH 2022

Giannis Antetokounmpo poured in 42 points and the Milwaukee Bucks overcame a fourth-quarter comeback to defeat the visiting Boston Celtics 103-101 Saturday afternoon to take a 2-1 lead in their Eastern Conference semifinal series.

After trailing by 13 in the fourth quarter, the Celtics came all the way back to take a one-point lead with 1:49 remaining when Jaylen Brown made a pair of free throws.

After Antetokounmpo scored to put the Bucks back into the lead, Jrue Holiday sank a turnaround jumper with 11 seconds remaining and Milwaukee was back up three.

Marcus Smart was fouled with 4.6 seconds remaining, and after he made one free throw, he intentionally missed the second, the Celtics got the rebound but Smart missed a fadeaway as the clock was running out and Al Horford's tip-in to potentially tie things at 103-103 came just after the final buzzer.

Antetokounmpo added 12 rebounds and eight assists on 16-of-30 shooting to give the Bucks a 2-1 series advantage. Holiday contributed 25 points and seven rebounds, and Brook Lopez chipped in 13 points and 10 rebounds.

Jaylen Brown paced Boston with 27 points and 12 rebounds on 8-of-16 shooting. Horford supplied 22 points and 16 rebounds for the Celtics while Derrick White went for 14 points off the bench.

Milwaukee outscored the Celtics 20-6 over the first 5:46 of the third quarter to open up a 10-point lead. Boston responded with a brief run to pull back within five, but the Bucks punched right back and would go on to carry a 13-point advantage into the fourth.

Despite shooting just 4-of-18 (22.2 percent) from beyond the arc in the first half, the Celtics went into the break with a 50-46 lead thanks to a 9-2 run to close the first half.

Boston took advantage of its opportunities at the charity stripe, cashing in on 16 of 17 first-half free throws (94.1 percent).

Antetokounmpo led all scorers with 20 points and nine rebounds to keep Milwaukee in contention, and Lopez had 11 points. Both players found themselves in foul trouble, though, as they each picked up three fouls in the half.

Defense dictated the first 12 minutes of action, as neither team could shoot above 37 percent from the field. Boston also went just 1-for-7 (14.3 percent) from 3-point range, while the Bucks shot 2-of-10 (20.0 percent).

--Field Level Media

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