Nine months after the Milwaukee Bucks had their bubble burst by the Miami Heat last postseason, the Bucks have relentlessly claimed gratifying revenge by sweeping the sixth-seeded Heat in the first-round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs following a 120-103 masterful Game 4 victory.
Milwaukee wasted no time during this series, annihilating and tearing apart the Heat’s identity while embarrassing the so-called “Heat culture.” As the reigning back-to-back MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo stated, “There’s a saying, don’t play with your food. We didn’t want to play with our food.”
As the Bucks closed out the series in South Beach on Saturday afternoon, Antetokounmpo finished with 20 points, 15 assists, and 12 rebounds as he recorded his first career playoff triple-double and became just the third Buck to produce a triple-double in postseason franchise history. “We kept our composure, we kept moving the ball, we kept defending, and we were able to get a win,” Antetokounmpo said.
Throughout the entire series, the Bucks played with superior confidence, intensity, energy, togetherness, and ultimately found their comfort level. On both ends of the floor, they executed head coach Mike Budenholzer’s game plan to perfection.
Offensively, they continuously found ways to dissect Miami’s well-respected defense, and consistently disrupted the flow of their swift, motion offense on the defensive end. Game 1 was an outlier as the Bucks shot just 16.1 percent from 3-point range compared to 40.0 percent from the Heat, but still escaped with a resilient 109-107 overtime win behind 56 points in the paint while outrebounding them 64-51.
Controlling the interior was a commonplace for the Bucks throughout this matchup, and proved to be a major factor within the scheme and personnel involved. In Game 2, they put it all together by scoring 46 points in the paint, outrebounding the Heat 61-36, and also shooting 41.5 percent from beyond the arc en route to a 132-98 blowout victory.
Milwaukee never looked back from there, stepping on their throats in a similar way during the 113-84 Game 3 win, and then wrapping it up in Game 4 to sweep the series 4-0.
The Heat were absolutely exposed outside the bubble this time around, but give credit to this much improved, more versatile Bucks team for adjusting properly and strengthening the majority of their weaknesses from last season’s blunders. Miami’s stars, Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, were nonexistent for the most part, and Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro were unable to find a consistent rhythm like they did in the bubble.
Following a dominant stretch of performances from the Milwaukee Bucks to sweep the Miami Heat, let’s dive into 3 takeaways from this first-round series.
As the Milwaukee Bucks will likely receive a week of rest before facing the No. 2 seed Brooklyn Nets in what should be an exhilarating, heavyweight second-round matchup, let’s pick out three takeaways from their first-round demolition over the Miami Heat.