the Milwaukee dollars are one win away from their first NBA championship since 1974 after a 123-119 victory over the Phoenix Suns at Phoenix Suns Arena.
After Holiday made the first move of the game, Jae Crowder scored eight points to help the Suns take a 14-9 lead. They extended their advantage to 32-16 by shooting 80% from the field, 80% from three and recording five interceptions already scheduled in the first nine minutes.
Bucks Coach Mike Budenholzer called the time out and with Holiday struggling with two fouls, Phoenix was leading 37-21 after a quarter. Booker led all scorers with 11 points.
Milwaukee started the second quarter on an 11-3 streak to reduce the lead to 40-32 with Antetokounmpo on the bench. Coach of the Suns Monty williams called his own time out, but the Bucks ran another run to tie the game at 42.
The two teams went back and forth and at halftime Milwaukee led 64-61 with a second quarter of 43 points. They connected on six of nine three-point attempts with Holiday, the highest man with 18 points. Booker was 15.
The momentum stayed with the Eastern Conference champions as they netted nine of their first 12 shots and took a ten-point lead. A 20-foot check from Antetokounmpo gave Milwaukee an 11 lead with 3:09 to go.
Leading 100-90 in the fourth quarter, the Bucks were leading by eight with 5:44 left when Phoenix challenged a criticism of a defensive shooting foul on Ayton, but it felt like a hook on Antetokounmpo but also a step out of bounds. . The game was reviewed and the appeal was upheld.
On the next possession, the Suns reduced the lead to six over little Paul, but Antetokuonmpo separated a pair from the foul line. Booker and Middleton made a three-point play and Milwaukee came up ten.
Phoenix had one last run. Paul made a three, then Ayton got a pair of free throws to reduce the Bucks lead to five with 2:43 left. Middleton hit a three-back pullback and although Booker responded with a basket, a late rally wasn’t enough and Milwaukee hung on.