The time has finally come; the playoffs are finally here. Therefore, it is only right to ask: Which series will be the most exciting to watch? While the answer may not be as clear, as the playoffs are always full of surprises, the clash between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Chicago Bulls will provide guaranteed excitement.
This series will be memorable since it is likely to be highly competitive from the very beginning. On the one hand, the Bucks had a pretty solid year, maintaining consistency throughout the regular season. On the other, the Bulls were one of the biggest surprises, being the #1 team in the eastern conference for quite a long time. Who might have the upper hand in this series?
Milwaukee Bucks determining factors:
Home court advantage.
Despite being unrelated to the game, the home court advantage in a playoff series will always bring peace to the players. Having fans on their side will be crucial for team motivation, and the Bucks’ fans have always shown unreal support towards them.
More playoff experience.
With five playoff appearances in a row (since 2016-17), the Wisconsin team has recent, first-hand experience playing postseason basketball. Although this is an entirely different year, the adjustments they have to make still remain. Compared to the Chicago Bulls, who have not played a playoff series since 2017, the Bucks have a clear advantage in this regard.
The current Finals MVP proved this season how he is constantly improving on his game, enhancing his Free throw and Middle range percentages. Moreover, the physicality of playoff basketball fits Giannis’ style. His superiority and explosiveness in the paint grant him offensive advantage and opportunities. Unlike last year, going to the free-throw line might actually be an advantage for him to decide close games.
Defending champions’ status.
Being the current NBA champions usually boosts a team’s morale and confidence when playing. Both coaching staff and players work well under pressure. Furthermore, they ended up 4-0 against the Bulls in the regular season. However, they need to be careful with overconfidence, as this can easily go against them.
Chicago Bulls determining factors:
DeRozan + Lavine.
These additions to the Chicago Bulls have been nothing short of a miracle for the franchise. While everyone expected them to have a solid performance throughout the season, they easily exceeded expectations, as part of the reason for the teams’ success is due to them. The Bucks’ defense will definitely have a hard time trying to contain this duo. Even though Zach Lavine has played 478 games without a playoff appearance, this will ultimately make him realize the importance of winning this series.
Perhaps the most surprising improvement of the Bulls is shooting efficacy, achieving top-notch percentages on Field Goals with 48%, Free Throws, with 81.3% (both 3rd in the league), and Three Pointers, with 36.9 (4th in the league). Surprisingly, they are above the Milwaukee bucks on each of these stats.
Despite not being as experienced, the fact that they are not favorites to win the series might enhance the teams’ performance overall. Regardless of having virtually little chance of advancing to the conference semi-finals, their hunger can drive them to the desired outcome.
Fortunately, this series will bring fans nothing but utter joy, as the games are expected to be extremely close, with both teams having an arduous task ahead of them.
Series prediction: Bucks 4 – Bulls 2 (6 game series)
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