We’ve got a gentlemen’s sweep

William Nevarez

The Milwaukee Bucks have been keeping things interesting in the bubble during the postseason. They sparked a strike that had never been seen before in the NBA.

Despite this, the Bucks were sent home a lot sooner than expected as the 1st seed in the Eastern Conference with the best regular-season record in the NBA. The Bucks were set to face off against the 5th seeded Miami Heat in the second round of the NBA playoffs this year.

Jimmy Butler (left) squares off agianst Giannis Antetokounmpo (right) in round 2 of the NBA playoffs
Jimmy Butler (left) squares off agianst Giannis Antetokounmpo (right) in round 2 of the NBA playoffs

Prior to this round, it was generally known to basketball fans that the Miami Heat were no pushovers coming off of a sweep of the 4th seeded Indiana Pacers. The majority of experts and analysts predicted the Bucks, led by defensive player of the year and MVP candidate Giannis Antetokounmpo, to come out victorious.

Miami is led by All-Star forwards Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. In the first two games of the series, it was evident that Miami was not afraid of the Bucks and were not going to back down. They won Game 1 by a score of 115-104. Their confidence paid off and Miami took a two-game lead and had early control of the series after winning Game 2 116-114.

Miami’s ability to play strong defensively, and force Antetokounmpo to give the ball up to his teammates more often was entertaining to see. Most teams struggled to do so during the regular season which is why Antetokounmpo nearly averaged 30 points per game.

Headed into Game 3, Milwaukee desperately needed a win to start swinging momentum their way or else the series would be all but over. If the Heat took this game they would have a 3-0 lead over Milwaukee. There has never been a team in the history of the NBA that has overcame a 3-0 deficit.

Miami came in and utilized their strategy of slowing down Giannis and took down the Bucks 115-100 in Game 3, taking complete control of the series.

Game 4 did not look like it was going to end well after Antetokounmpo went down with an ankle injury early in the 2nd quarter. However, Milwaukee hung around and rallied together and pulled off a 118-115 victory in overtime to avoid being eliminated.

Giannis Antetokounmpo injures ankle in Game 4 
(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Giannis Antetokounmpo re-injures ankle in Game 4 and has to leave the game
(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

In Game 5 the Heat came out and handled business. After falling behind early in the contest, Miami rallied back and won 103-94. In the series clinching game, Butler went for 17-points, 10-rebounds and 6-assists. The Miami Heat did the unthinkable and took down the team with the best overall record despite being seeded 5th in the East.

Miami is moving onto their first Eastern Conference finals appearance since 2014.

The 2020 Eastern Conference Finals will feature the Miami Heat going against the Boston Celtics who just defeated the Toronto Raptors in seven games.