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Heat Freeze As Bucks Kick On For 2-0 Series Lead

Last season, the Miami Heat stunned many when defeating the Eastern Conference top seed Milwaukee Bucks 4-1 in the Conference Semifinals on their way to the NBA Finals.

There won’t be any repeat of that scoreline this season after the Bucks took a firm stranglehold on their First Round NBA Playoff game, winning the second match very comfortably 132-98.

Jrue Holiday contributed just 11 points, but had 7 rebounds and 15 assists, while current NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo landed 13 rebounds, 6 assists and 31 points to drive the Bucks on to victory.

It was a chastening defeat for Miami, for whom Dewayne Dedmon was the top scorer with just 19 points.

First Quarter Meltdown For Miami

Having narrowly lost the first game 109-107 to a buzzer beater from Khris Middleton with 0.5 seconds remaining, the expectation was for another closely fought contest at the Fiserv Forum last night.

However, from the first quarter, Miami were always up against it.

Led by reserve Bryn Forbes, who hit five out of six three pointers in the first quarter alone, and ably supported by Giannis, Middleton and Holiday, the Bucks stormed into a 26 point lead in the first quarter, netting 46 points in a blistering start that simply blew Miami away.

It was a historic start for the Bucks, who hit 10 3-pointers in the first quarter alone, tying the NBA record for most landed in a quarter.

Not only that, but the 26-point lead that they built up also tied the largest first quarter lead achieved by any team in the NBA post season in the history of the NBA.

Miami never managed to close the gap to less than 25 points in the second half which meant that the Bucks were able to rest a number of players during the last two quarters ahead of the third game in the series on Thursday.

At this moment, things look grim for Heat fans, but with the next two games in Miami, they will be hoping that their team can at least find some fighting spirit to make a contest of things.

Otherwise, this series could well be over in double-quick time.

Powerhouse Jokic Fires Nuggets To Win To Level Series Against Blazers

In the second NBA Playoff game, the Denver Nuggets faced the Portland Trail Blazers at the Ball Arena in Denver, hoping to pull themselves level after a loss to the Blazers in the first game.

MVP candidate Nikola Jokic underlined why he has been ranked so highly this season once again as he scored 38 points, with 8 rebounds and 5 assists as he led the home team to a 128-109 victory to level the series 1-1.

Incredibly, Jokic’s 38 points were not the most scored by an individual player in the game as the Trail Blazers All-Star guard Damian Lillard put in an incredible effort in defeat.

Lillard netted 42 points, 10 assists and four rebounds in a superb individual effort that didn’t get the support it deserved from his teammates.

The Nuggets won all four quarters in terms of points scored and while no quarter saw them score more than six more than the Trail Blazers, it was this consistency that eventually led them to land the 19-point victory to level the series.

We now head west to Portland for the next two games in the series and if Lillard and Jokic can keep up this form, then it looks a very good bet that this one may go right down to the wire.

And it may well be the player who can best support their teams genuine superstar talent that decides who reaches the Conference Semifinal from this intriguing matchup.

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