5 Takeaways from Celtics-Bucks Eastern Conference Semifinals Series
After seven games in Eastern Conference Semifinals Series, the Boston Celtics dominated the Milwaukee Bucks. Many would agree that this matchup was one of the best playoff series this year, and it's saddening to see it end.
Each game contained elevated and high-level basketball, with both teams going back and forth. But the Celtics came out on top, prevailing over the defending NBA champions.
Both teams are championship-worthy, but the Boston Celtics are advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals. Looking back on this memorable matchup, here are five things we learned.
The Celtics' Key to Success is Grant Williams
Grant Williams was the key contributor to the Boston Celtics Eastern Conference Semifinals Series win. Not only did Williams improve defensively, but his confidence has grown aggressively since the playoffs.
The Celtics forward have zero doubts about his ability to defend anyone on the court. Also, the Milwaukee Bucks had no interest in guarding the 23-year-old forward at the three-point line, raking in plenty of points early on.
Grant Williams shot about 37.8% from long-range in this Eastern Conference Semifinals Series, and moving on; the Celtics will continue to depend on him to hit a couple of big shots from the perimeter.
In Game 7, Williams set a playoff career-high with 27 points, powering the Boston Celtics to the Finals. Best of all, he scored seven three-pointers, becoming the third NBA player to hit seven three-pointers in a Game 7. He joins Marcus Morris and Stephen Curry on the list. Undoubtedly, Grant Williams is one of the most productive players on the Celtics' roster right now.
Boston's Performance From the Perimeter is Unrivaled
Another key takeaway from the Celtics-Bucks series is how well the Boston Celtics shot the basketball from the perimeter. In the seven games against the Bucks, the Celtics shot 37.7% or 110-292 from a three-point range as a team.
And per game, the Celtics averaged about 15.7 three-pointers. Compared to their performance in the regular season, where they shot 35.6% from the perimeter and 13.2 three-pointers per game, the Celtics improved in this area.
In the Eastern Conference Semifinals Series, Boston Celtics made 53 more threes than the Milwaukee Bucks, which is a huge difference. And it was one of the main reasons why the Celtics were able to win the series.
More importantly, the three-pointers production came from multiple players out on the perimeter. So it's not just two or three players doing all the work. With this superb three-shooting range percentage, the Celtics are confidently heading into the Eastern Conference Finals.
So if you’re planning to bet on the NBA Moneylines and other wagering games, keep your eye out on the Celtics.
Khris Middleton is Undervalued
One of the reasons the Bucks failed to defend their title was Khris Middleton's absence. This All-Star player proved his capabilities last season. However, the franchise gave little value to what he's capable of because of Antetokounmpo's dominance on the court.
And Middleton's absence in the entire series proved costly for the Milwaukee Bucks. That's because no other player can replace what he's given to the team. Khris Middleton is more than just a No. 2 scorer.
Middleton is an essential part of the Bucks championship formula. The Bucks had nobody to rely on for immediate production without him, and Giannis couldn't function properly.
The most refreshing story of the NBA playoffs is the re-emergence of Al Horford. He was on the bench last season for a falling flat OKC team. Plus, two years ago, Horford was part of Philadelphia's bizarre experiment.
It's true that Al Horford wasn't in demand or highly wanted on the trade market last summer. There are a couple of reasons for that:
Yet Brad Stevens wanted Al Horford back in the Boston Celtics. He then became a changed player once back in Boston and served as the foremost defender on Giannis. Then, in Game 7 of the series, Al Horford shined, claimed a few possessions, and made Giannis work hard on the court.
Giannis Antetokounmpo Makes NBA Postseason History
Giannis Antetokounmpo gave all he could in the series. Aside from his
great scoring, he dished out seven assists and grabbed over 14 rebounds per game in the series. And in the process, he made history.
The Milwaukee Bucks' power forward became the first player to record 50 assists, 100 rebounds, and 200 points in the same playoff series. Giannis showed an impressive performance, and many consider him the best player in the league right now.
After seven exhausting games, the Boston Celtics-Milwaukee Bucks series is over. Kudos to the Bucks for making it such a close series. But in the end, the Celtics were just too much for them. Milwaukee fought hard, but Boston could take control and win the series. It's a massive accomplishment for the Celtics, and they should be very proud of themselves.