Down 3-0, the Milwaukee Bucks avoided elimination in Game 4, beating the Miami Heat 118-115 in overtime. What makes this win surprising is that they did it without Giannis Antetokounmpo for most of the game.
With 10:18 left to go in the first half, Giannis drove inside and badly sprained his ankle.
Giannis proceeded to shoot his free throws and then exited the game. He tried his best to get back into the game and did not want to watch helplessly from the locker room. He tried to get the green light from the medical staff to return. However, he could not plant or jump off the sprain.
Although Giannis could not return, he was very effective in the 11 minutes that he did play. He performed very well as he scored 19 points in that short time. This total is higher than what Jimmy Butler put up the entire game. He only managed to score 17 points.
Although Butler did not play very well, other Heat players were able to step up. Bam Adebayo had 26 points, 12 rebounds, and eight assists. Duncan Robinson and Jae Crowder combined for 38 points, making 12 threes between them. However, it was not enough as they ended up conceding their first loss of the postseason.
In the Greek Freak’s absence, Khris Middleton stepped up. He put up 36 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists in a heroic effort to keep the series alive. He did also have some help as Eric Bledsoe, and Brook Lopez combined for 24 points.
After the game, coach Mike Budenholzer spoke on the possibility of Giannis coming back for game five, saying that “He’ll get treatment through the night. We’ll just see how he does over the next 24-48 hours.“
Although the Bucks won game four mostly without Giannis, they will undoubtedly need him to have a chance of coming back in this series.