Crowned: Heat 96 — Bucks 77

King James shares a crowning with Ekpe Udoh (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
King James shares a crowning with Ekpe Udoh (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Milwaukee Bucks 77 Recap | Box Score 96 Miami Heat
Khris Middleton, PF Shot Chart 33 MIN | 2-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 4 PTS | -15

After a season of overusing passive aggressive traps and double-teams, the Bucks’ defensive tactics left Khris Middleton alone to tangle with LeBron James. Middleton did a decent job of it, until James starting to emphasize the low post over stuff on the perimeter. All that work on defense left no legs for offense though.

Jeff Adrien, PF Shot Chart 34 MIN | 7-15 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 14 PTS | -1

He elevated like a pogo stick for one nice dunk, scored some baskets in the paint and missed all his jump shots. He’s such a non-factor on the defensive end that the Bucks could get equivalent (or better) production from Drew Gooden.

Zaza Pachulia, C Shot Chart 25 MIN | 3-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 16 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | -14

He had 16 rebounds in 25 minutes, including 6 on the offensive end.

Ramon Sessions, PG Shot Chart 45 MIN | 6-12 FG | 6-6 FT | 3 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 19 PTS | -13

He is a professional point guard. Like Knight, he had a lot of turnovers, but at least he had a handful of assists. After turning down a lot of good chances to throw Giannis a lob this season, he finally let loose with one and it wasn’t good, so maybe I was wrong to wish for them or maybe he just needs more practice.

Brandon Knight, PG Shot Chart 42 MIN | 4-11 FG | 1-1 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 5 TO | 11 PTS | -27

Miami seems to know how to defend Brandon Knight better than everyone else defends him. When he goes to his right, there’s always an extra body waiting for him — usually with arms up waiting to deflect an ill-conceived pass. His 4/11 FG shooting line is made even worse by the fact that it was padded in fourth-quarter meaninglessness.

Ekpe Udoh, PF Shot Chart 16 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -12

Ekpe is a smart and strong defender. He has been hurt a lot this season, and I suppose those injuries robbed him of a chance to improve upon the weaker aspects of his game (catching the ball, rebounding, scoring in the post). I am irrationally afraid that he is going to go somewhere next season, get healthy, and become an absolute defensive maestro again.

Giannis tried to throw him a behind-the-back pass, which I suppose is the folly of youth.

John Henson, C Shot Chart 15 MIN | 5-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | -19

His footwork is the low post is phenomenal. I want to see him play more that 15 minutes. The Bucks started the fourth quarter down 20 points, and Henson spurred a 6-0 mini-run to get the lead to the point where it looked like the Heat were going to have to bring LeBron back in the game when they clearly had no desire to do so. Then Norris Cole his a lucky running jump shot and the comeback train went in reverse.

Also, see below.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, SG Shot Chart 22 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | -6

In the second quarter, Giannis caught a short outlet pass on the far free throw line. He quickly amped up to full speed and gently placed in a soft layup — having traveled nearly 80 feet in three dribbles. Did he travel at the end of it? Yes, but it’s fun nonetheless.

Larry Drew

He coached.

Two Things We Saw

    1. Ekpe Udoh took the brunt of LeBron’s dunk at the end of the first quarter (see pic above), but it was John Henson who should be chided. His positioning on the pick-and-roll play wasn’t just bad, it was wrong. Chris Andersen is setting a pick to Middleton’s right, and Henson has set up to give him help on the left. After one dribble to the pick side, LeBron had all the space he could ever want.Screen shot 2014-04-03 at 9.59.20 AM
    2. His phone was probably lit up with texts and messages after the game, but Ekpe came to grips with getting dunked on as a well-adjusted person would.

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  1. I think theis “embarrassment” of getting dunked on is so overblown. What is a player supposed to do?

  2. It’s becoming clear the Bucks do not think very highly of John Henson.

    He not only doesn’t start- he’s playing behind the likes of Jeff Adrien and Za Za AND his bench minutes are declining steadily.

    How about one of you “reporters” start grilling Drew on the reasons behind their treatment of Henson?

  3. Adrien – 34 minutes
    Sessions – 45 minutes
    Both free agents to be.
    Giannis – 22 minutes.
    Henson – 15 minutes
    What the hell is this coach doing? We were out of the game for the last 44 minutes of the game! And for every minirun we went on, giannis and Henson were in the game. Can this bum and get a legitimate coach.

  4. I really liked this recap. For example, it’s interesting to learn that Ekpe plays stout defense but Jeff does not. It’s good to know that John has excellent footwork around the basket (if only he will work on his medium-range jumper in the off-season).
    Since I can be hard on KL and the other guys at Bucksketball, I just want to say that I really appreciate these kinds of insights/opinions to help me to become a more knowledgeable fan. (I can also add Jeremy’s recent assessment of Ramon as a point guard in response to one of my comments).
    Agree or disagree, I enjoy learning what the guys at Bucksketball think, as well as other knowledgeable fans on this site. I’m really glad to read above that I’m not the only one concerned about the way John is being treated by the Bucks.

  5. I can completely understand the frustrations with the minutes. Henson in particular has a tendency to play fairly well against Miami, and I see no reason why our most talented front court player is only playing 15 minutes.

    Giannis, I’m a little less frustrated with. He still played 22 minutes which is fair. It’s a case where when he’s playing well, Drew has generally awarded him with extra minutes, but when he’s playing poorly and out of control, his minutes go down. He’s still gotten a hell of a lot more chances than he ever would have with Skiles as coach.