BLOGTABLE: Would Bucks or Raptors match up better in Finals vs. Warriors?
NBA.com Global on May 25, 2019 06:49 PM
Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo shoots past Toronto Raptors' Kawhi Leonard during the first half of Game 5 of the NBA Eastern Conference basketball playoff finals Thursday, May 23, 2019, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
NBA.com staff report
Who would match up better against the Warriors in The Finals: Raptors or Bucks?
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Steve Aschburner: Toronto. And I thought this way even before the Raptors took a 3-2 series lead in the East finals Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). Milwaukee’s defense is stretched thin enough against Toronto, so the Warriors’ firepower would be a huge problem. Especially when Kevin Durant returns, Golden State has defenders with whom it can swarm Giannis Antetokounmpo, even more effectively than the Raptors have or the Celtics (briefly) did. Draymond Green locked onto Giannis for four to seven games? Come on, that also would be a problem for Milwaukee. Frankly, I’m not sure either of East finalists would get the edge at even one spot in a position-by-position breakdown. The only reason I think the Warriors won’t sweep is, they’ll have to deal with some shifting of gears once Durant and maybe DeMarcus Cousins come back. Might cost ‘em a game.
Shaun Powell: Go with the Bucks because not only do they have an elite player, they shoot three-pointers and play decent defensively. Both teams match up well if the Warriors aren't bringing Kevin Durant. Neither, however, matches up well if they are.
John Schuhmann: Despite their performance in Games 3-5 of the Eastern Conference finals, it's probably the Bucks. They're bigger and they have a lot of guards that can defend Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson (to some degree of success, at least). Their defense does allow a lot of three-point attempts, but they are good at forcing the right guys to shoot those three-pointers. In fact, the 7.6 three-point attempts per 36 minutes that Curry averaged against the Bucks was his lowest rate against any opponent. Of course, Toronto's defense has been fantastic throughout the playoffs, Kawhi Leonard has taken things to a new level, and the Raptors would also have a puncher's chance against the champs.