Bucks’ Season Ends with 109-81 Loss to Celtics in NBA Playoffs


PC: Milwaukee Bucks, Twitter

NBA stars Tatum, left, and Antetokounmpo, right, share a postgame embrace.

Joey Bonadonna, Sports Editor, Online Tritonian

The Milwaukee Bucks fell to the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the second round of the NBA Playoffs on Sunday by a final score of 109-81.

The Bucks, who were the defending NBA champions after defeating the Phoenix Suns in the 2021 NBA Finals, were unable to repeat their title, despite having a 3-2 advantage over the Celtics in the series.

Throughout the entire series, Milwaukee struggled to catch fire from three, which ended up being their Achilles’ heel, shooting just 30% from deep. The Bucks sorely missed Khris Middleton’s shooting and scoring ability, who missed the entire series after suffering a knee injury in Game 2 of the first round against Chicago.

Boston, however, shot 37.5% from three with a much deeper scoring attack behind stellar performances all series from Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Al Horford and Marcus Smart, as well as surprise attacks from players usually in a bench role like Grant Williams and Derrick White.

However, despite the loss, the performance of Giannis Antetokounmpo was truly impressive, who averaged 33.8 PPG, 14.7 RPG and 7.1 APG and became the first player in NBA history to score more than 200 points and tally over 100 rebounds and 50 assists in one playoff series.

Going forward for the Bucks, they will have to figure out how to replicate the depth that the 2021 Finals team had if they want to have more title runs in the future. Surely, Middleton’s absence had much to do with the drop-off from last year’s success, but the offensive performance of Jrue Holiday left a lot to be desired compared to 2021 and the exit of PJ Tucker in free agency to Miami left a gaping hole in the defensive plan for this year’s team.

The Celtics will go on to face off with the Miami Heat in Eastern Conference Finals, a rematch from the 2020 Playoffs, a series where the Heat were victorious in claiming a berth in the NBA Finals. 

The Bucks will head into the offseason with a few questions to be answered about next year’s team in the quest for another NBA championship, but with few players with expiring contracts and much of the production from this year’s squad returning, it is almost certain that Milwaukee will be a championship contender for another year as well.