Cincinnati.com
National Basketball Association
Preview
Boston at Milwaukee
When: 1:00 PM ET, Sunday, April 22, 2018
Where: BMO Harris Bradley Center, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The Milwaukee Bucks clamped down defensively to get back into their first-round series with the Boston Celtics, and they'll try to even the best-of-seven matchup at two wins apiece when the teams play Game 4 in Milwaukee on Sunday. After allowing an average of 116.5 points in the first two games at Boston - one of which did go to overtime - the seventh-seeded Bucks held the Celtics to 40 percent shooting and forced 18 turnovers in Friday's 116-92 Game 3 win.

"The activity, if you take the stat sheet out of it, the activity and the energy that we brought ... as you go through the game, that's what you need, is the energy first," interim coach Joe Prunty told reporters. The Bucks were no slouch at the other end of the floor while shooting 57 percent and making 16-of-33 3-pointers. The halftime score was 58-35 in favor of the hosts and second-seeded Boston knows it needs a better start to avoid going back home tied 2-2. "We got into a hole. This is new for our group," forward Al Horford - who scored a team-high 16 points - told the media. "They had it going ... and we really didn't have an answer for them tonight."

TV: 1 p.m. ET, ABC

ABOUT THE CELTICS: With three young players - Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and Terry Rozier - making their first career starts in a road playoff game, jitters and anxiety seemed to play a role as Boston fell behind 27-12 after the first quarter. "I think that we learned that the level – the intensity – that is playing in the playoffs on the road (is heightened)," Horford said. "I feel like it was just a different level of intensity and we all saw it. We felt it." The trio combined to go 11-for-27 from the floor in the loss but they committed just one turnover combined after the opening quarter.

ABOUT THE BUCKS: Jabari Parker managed only two points on 1-of-7 shooting in the two losses at Boston, but he recovered in a big way back home with 17 points, five rebounds, two assists, two blocks and a steal off the bench in Game 3. "Jabari's a special talent, man," point guard Eric Bledsoe told the media. "All he's got to do is stick with it. Not get too high, not get too low. He played phenomenal tonight. We need him to play like that from here on out." Giannis Antetokounmpo had his streak of consecutive 30-point playoff games snapped at four but he was 8-of-13 from the floor and is shooting 62.7 percent while averaging 28 points in the series.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Milwaukee is shooting 54.8 percent in the series, compared to 45.1 percent for Boston.

2. Bucks backup C Thon Maker had 14 points and five blocked shots in Game 3 while starting C John Henson sat with a sore back.

3. Horford is averaging 18.7 points in the series while making 3-of-5 3-pointers and 15-of-17 free throws.

PREDICTION: Bucks 111, Celtics 105
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Boston 57-28 L1 29-14 27-14 7-6 50-22 12-4 35-20
Milwaukee 45-40 W1 26-16 19-24 6-3 39-37 6-10 28-27
Last Meeting
Boston Milwaukee
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
4/20/18 BOS 92 MIL 116 92 45 40.0 116 37 57.0
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Boston A. Horford 16 53.8 1
Milwaukee K. Middleton 23 58.8 0
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Boston G. Monroe 12 7 5
Milwaukee K. Middleton 8 0 8
Assists Player  
Boston T. Rozier 9
Milwaukee K. Middleton 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Boston K. Irving 1512 49.2 234
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 2139 53.3 518
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Boston A. Horford 573 115 458
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 790 161 629
Assists Player  
Boston A. Horford 359
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 390
Quickchart Matchup
Boston Boston Off vs  Milwaukee Milwaukee Defense
Boston Off vs Milwaukee - Points For 104.2 Points For
Boston Off vs Milwaukee - Points Against 106.8 Points Against
Boston - FG% 45.0 FG%
Milwaukee - FG% 46.7 FG%
Boston - Reb 44.4 Reb
Milwaukee - Reb 42.7 Reb
Milwaukee Milwaukee Off vs  Boston Boston Defense
Milwaukee Off vs Boston - Points For 106.6 Points For
Milwaukee Off vs Boston - Points Against 100.8 Points Against
Milwaukee - FG% 48.1 FG%
Boston - FG% 44.3 FG%
Milwaukee - Reb 39.8 Reb
Boston - Reb 43.7 Reb