Bucks overwhelm Raptors 104-77, take 2-1 series lead

NBA Playoffs: Toronto Raptors at Milwaukee Bucks Game 3

Khris Middleton added 20 points to take the series lead two games to one.

After a pair of thrilling games in Toronto, the Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks resume their Eastern Conference first-round playoff series Thursday night at Bradley Center.

Looking at the betting trends, the Raptors are 6-2 ATS in their last eight road games, 6-19-1 ATS in their last 26 Conference Quarterfinals games and 4-1 ATS in their last five games following a loss.

Milwaukee didn't have this defense during the regular season, not for three games like we've seen in this series. The Raptors used their fouls wisely, keeping the Bucks away from the penalty line for the most part, and limited their rivals to just 41.4 percent from the field.

"There's none", Casey said when asked if he had a logical explanation for the complete one-sidedness of the game.

They played well offensively. Stealing game one was fun, but it means nothing if they let Toronto come into their house and steal one back.

After closing the market with the TofoRaptors as an 8-point favorite in both of the games played in Toronto, the books opened with a slight advantage on the Bucks, favoring them by a point.

Third, the Bucks have been relying on their young guys, so why not the Raptors?

Antetokounmpo scored nine more in the final quarter, and the Raptors got no closer than 23 points the rest of the way.

Frustration was evident early in the game. Despite a big game one from DeMar DeRozan, who dropped a team-high 27 points to go along with eight rebounds, he didn't get much help elsewhere.

This was just a blanket the Bucks threw over the Raptors negating just about every attempt to attack the basket the Raptors made. There are some commonalities between the two games in terms of system and personnel, but to quarantine DeRozan in the playoffs is a more complicated matter entirely. If they want to prove they are ready to take that next step, now is the time to go out and make it happen.

The Bucks shot a sizzling 67 per cent in the first quarter and when Michael Beasley drained a three with 37 seconds left, it gave Milwaukee a 20-point lead.

Matthew Dellavedova scored 10 points in the Bucks' impressive win over Toronto. And Casey emptied his bench with five minutes to play. Eventually he wound up using all 13 on his bench.

Afterward, typically understated head coach Jason Kidd said he couldn't take credit for the Bucks' comprehensive display, praising their defensive effort and how they shared the ball on offense. Maker scored 11 points, with a 3-pointer and a couple dunks, again making his presence felt on defense. In Game 3, he hit his shots from the perimeter and when he has his jumper going, he's near impossible to guard.

Kyle Lowry and Delon Wright led the Raptors with 13 points, which is tied for the fewest points by a Bucks' playoff opponent leading scorer in franchise history (Williams, 4/4/71 vs. San Francisco).

As bad as it got though, there was plenty of evidence that the Raptors didn't just quit. "We must have maximum energy on both ends of the floor, precise execution, and really go out and get this game".

If there was any concern that the relatively young Bucks might be caught up in the emotion of the moment, that they'd press and be too excited and out of control, it dissipated in a clinic-like start.

Game 4 is Saturday night. There will be no shortage of other issues to address however. "The basketball will find the right person, and that's what we've got to do", Casey said.

Patterson has always been one of the league's best complementary players, and his stellar plus-minus over the past few years has reflected that.

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