Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer explains the controversial late-game move of pulling out Giannis Antetokounmpo
Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer has shed some light on the controversial late-game benching of NBA MVP candidate Giannis Antetokounmpo in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Thursday.
Budenholzer said Antetokounmpo “twisted his ankle in the backcourt” late in the fourth quarter, per national NBA writer Ben Golliver of the Washington Post.
Bucks' Mike Budenholzer on why he pulled Giannis Antetokounmpo late in fourth quarter of Game 5 loss to Raptors: "He twisted his ankle in the backcourt. He just looked like he was in a lot of pain and couldn't move." pic.twitter.com/lDQe0pFcLH
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) May 24, 2019
The Raptors beat the Bucks in Game 5 to take a 3-2 series lead, 105-99. Toronto has come back from an early 0-2 series deficit. The Raptors have now beaten Milwaukee three straight times. They’re also on the brink of their first NBA Finals appearance.
Toronto battled back from an early 14-point deficit on Thursday. Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard, who made the All-NBA second team, led all scorers with 35 points. Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 24 points.
The Greek Freak in Game 5:
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) May 24, 2019
The injury forced Antetokounmpo to sit out the Bucks’ next game against the Atlanta Hawks.
Milwaukee fans can only hope The Greek Freak’s most recent right ankle injury won’t hobble him for Game 6 on Saturday. It’s the Bucks’ last chance to salvage a crack at a second NBA title in franchise history.