Kevin Durant’s kryptonite in Milwaukee Bucks, per Giannis Antetokounmpo
Surprisingly, it is not him or his second-in-command Khris Middleton. For Giannis, PJ Tucker has been KD’s kryptonite. The Bucks star said so as much in the postgame presser of their Game 4 victory, highlighting how important the veteran forward has been to the team in the playoffs.
“He keeps making everything tough on KD. He’s vocal. He’s a leader. He pushes us to be great. He’s definitely a big piece of this organization and this team. He’s going to keep helping us. We definitely need him moving forward,” Antetokounmpo said of Tucker, per Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype.
Giannis Antetokounmpo might be biased toward his Bucks teammate, but numbers don’t lie. As ESPN shared on Twitter, PJ Tucker really did put the clamps on Kevin Durant during Sunday’s contest, limiting him to just nine points on 25 percent shooting as the primary defender.
Of course, it was hard for Durant to do all the scoring alone with James Harden out and Kyrie Irving going down to an ankle injury early. However, credit should be given to Tucker as he has been in KD’s face (literally and figuratively) all series long between the Bucks and Nets.
Given Durant’s ability as an elite scorer, it will be hard for the 36-year-old Tucker to consistently limit the Nets superstar. Nonetheless, he doesn’t have to, as all he needs to do is keep making life hard for KD and make him ineffective as the rest of the Bucks handle the other stuff.