En route to a 51-21 document within the West, which was 5 video games higher than Milwaukee’s 46-26 within the East, the Suns swept a pair of thrillers from the Bucks within the common season, profitable 125-124 at residence on Feb. 10 and 128-127 in time beyond regulation at Milwaukee on April 19.
By advantage of getting had the higher document within the common season, the Suns may have the home-court benefit within the sequence. Phoenix was seeded second within the West, Milwaukee third within the East.
The groups have met as soon as beforehand within the playoffs, again when the Bucks have been a Western Conference membership. Seeded sixth, Milwaukee upset third-seeded Phoenix 2-0 in that 1978 first-round, best-of-three sequence.
He wasn’t on his recreation, taking pictures simply 4-for-17 total and 0-for-6 on 3-pointers en route to 14 factors and a game-high-tying 9 assists.
Milwaukee left little doubt, using Middleton’s 32 factors and Holiday’s 27 to a second straight win after the Hawks had rallied to tie the sequence at 2-2.
As they’d carried out within the first quarter, after they bolted out to a 15-4 lead, the Bucks used a spurt early within the third interval to construct a double-digit lead. Middleton did all of the scoring.
After Clint Capela obtained the Hawks inside 47-45 within the first minute of the second half, Middleton took over, hitting consecutive 3-pointers and a pair of two-pointers that sandwiched a three-point play for a private 13-point run and a 15-point lead.
He wasn’t carried out. The All-Star ahead then adopted a Young layup with one other 3-pointer, giving him 16 straight Milwaukee factors and the Bucks a 63-47 benefit.
With Holiday bombing in three 3-pointers of his personal, the lead was 91-72 by quarter’s finish and the Bucks have been packing their summer season put on for a visit to Phoenix.
Down 20 with 9:31 to go, the Hawks made a desperation run behind a pair of Cam Reddish 3-pointers to get as shut as 107-101 with 3:23 to play.
But Holiday stalled the rally with a layup 18 seconds later, Middleton dropped in a pair of free throws and the Hawks by no means obtained nearer than seven after that.
Brook Lopez (13), Pat Connaughton (13), Bobby Portis (12) and Jeff Teague (11) additionally scored in double figures for the Bucks, who out-shot the Hawks 46.1 p.c to 41.3 p.c.
Reddish had 21 factors and Bogdan Bogdanovic 20 to tempo the Hawks, who’ve by no means made the NBA Finals since their transfer to Atlanta.
John Collins had a 13-point, 11-rebound double-double for Atlanta, whereas Capela added 14 factors and Danilo Gallinari 13.
The Bucks by no means trailed within the first half after scoring 15 of the sport’s first 19 factors. The 11-point lead was their largest of the primary 24 minutes, which ended with Milwaukee holding a 47-43 lead.