Bucks

Bucks Unhorse Spurs in Exhibition Rout

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Savvy Bucks fans have surely seen credit card ads for 100,000 FREE* bonus miles. Why the asterisk? Because surely Visa has some fine print to hoodwink unwary consumers. Do the Bucks have to worry about their potential championship having an asterisk? Not in the mind of Bucks TV play-by-play announcer Jim Paschke. He argues, “this champion should have a star, not an asterisk.” The Bucks may not need to fly to its next game, but Giannis ensured they’re on track to redeem hard-work karma points in an impressive Orlando exhibition opener.

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Paschke and co-host Zora Stephenson correctly observe Giannis can’t ease into a competitive environment. Sure, there may be a temptation to play haphazardly against a struggling San Antonio franchise. The Greek Freak, however, pushed. He recorded five fouls in the first half, indicating he understandably needs to correct details. However, his passion projects an unwavering commitment to Milwaukee’s excellence. While Stephenson debated the philosophy of normalcy, Giannis ensured the Bucks’ usual dominance would continue.

The Bucks started somewhat slowly, leading only 47-41 at halftime. (The first scrimmage contains four ten-minute quarters). Thankfully, Coach Bud has instilled firm basketball charges in his men.

Momentum?

Before the games, a Milwaukee reporter asked Bud if the bucks had lost their momentum. His answer surprised many. Momentum, while real, isn’t the point of his teachings, he explained. Instead, it’s attention to the process of improvement that further the Deer.

The Bucks used this thoughtful instruction to increase their focus in the second half. At the first media timeout with 6:19 left in the third, Milwaukee only led 59-55. Brook Lopez and Giannis knew: it was time to lock-in. Brook swished a three, then Khris Middleton swiped the ball. Giannis flicked three layups through the net. In the blink of an eye, the lead is up to 13. Is it super-magic mojo overwhelming a weaker team? Remember, as impressive as the Bucks are, fundamentally, they’re still regular, decent people. The two-minute run, instead, encapsulates their concept of details culminating into an inevitable avalanche of success. By the end of three, the scoreboard favored the Cream City 85-67. Giannis was on his way out of the game, and back into his city’s heart.

Confident First Step

The Bucks ended the afternoon with an impressive 113-92 triumph. They have two more tune-ups, against Sacramento on Saturday and New Orleans on Monday, before the regular season restart. Notably, a needlessly violent play reminded Milwaukee that the bigger the Buck, the larger the target. With only 78 seconds left, Drew Eubanks clumsily committed a charge while trying to posterize Thanasis Antetokounmpo. Bucks fans held their collective breath before the robust Greek shook off the contact. Still, the play proves the road to the Finals, while very short in physical length, will be difficult emotionally. The first purchase by the Bucks in the Orlando bubble isn’t an official W. However, the charge smartly avoids the small-print obstacles while simultaneously whiting out every wrongful asterisk.

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About Jeffrey Newholm

"Jammin Jeff" Newholm had been a basketball fanatic since his high school days, and remained a casual fan as a student in Whitewater. Wishing to check in as an active participant, he also completed a writing certificate program at UWM. He loves seeing Bucks games more than any other activity in hometown Milwaukee and especially screaming really really loudly to get someone to miss a free throw. Twitter: @JeffreyNewholm

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