NThe heart of a champion is never in doubt. That phrase related to sports mystique, resilience taken to the extreme and an ideology that permeates the great teams, whether it is truth or fiction. It is the summary of the fifth match (3-2) of the conference semifinal between Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks, in which the Garden fell and opens a door to the resurgence of the defender of the ring.
Five odes to basketball between Bucks and Celtics, but at the key moment those of Udoka have been shipwrecked. To make matters worse, ‘with his own medicine’: defending one of his ‘dogs of prey’. Marcus Smart, named NBA Defender of the Year, fell into the clutches of Jrue Holiday. The perfect squire to the star Antetokounmpo and a warning that the Bucks are serious again. If ever they hadn’t been in that mode.
Jrue Holiday completes an immense defensive exercise against Smart, who is the one who has to play the last attack of Boston. There are the ‘Jay’s’, Brown and Tatum, and it is the hardened boy in Oklahoma who assumes the attack with 108-107. Holiday plugs him with six seconds to go. ‘Matchball’. Then the Smart ball goes up again… And he loses it with the Californian point guard. 3-2, the Garden falls.
Holiday is the champion’s hero. Neither the first nor the last time, because she always comes to the rescue. And also with his country, as It happened in the Tokyo Olympic Games, in which coming from the final it was fundamental in the 3&D. The perfect complement to the most undetectable Giannis Antetokounmpo. “It reminds me of me,” the Greek came to confess.
Corrective to the Celtics
And it shouldn’t be a good time in the locker room of one of the most winning franchises in NBA history. The Celtics have lived the entire series between comings and goings, without finishing breaking down to play like against the Nets -these of Brooklyn have a lot to blame and seeing how their physique and the selection of shots cause havoc. Two fundamental aspects, and more so when its defense is always the defining argument.
Jayson Tatum shines -although his teammates forgot him in several plays that could be decisive in the tie-, but losing a comfortable difference makes it clear that they lack solidity and consistency. Without this consistency in the attack, the tie runs a serious risk of ending at the camp’s housein.
The Giannis Antetokounmpo Factor
And the tie also goes through Giannis Antetokounmpo. There is no doubt that he is playing at the highest level of his life and his 40 points in one of the sanctuaries of basketball shows that he is not shrinking from the Celtics’ plan and the decisive loss of his faithful partner on the outside court, Khris Middleton. He has his way of playing and is absolutely indefensible.
Therefore, the Bucks return home with a lot of work done. Yes, it is to be hoped that Boston will put up a fight and that its best players will be able to storm again Wisconsin, but Milwaukee starts with rent. Both in the game and in the mental field. The champion has a heart.