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Monday, March 4, 2024

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118-112: The Raptors suffer to win the Bucks and place a 1-2 in the series

 Toronto (Canada), 19 .- The Toronto Raptors needed two extensions, throwing off the court to Giannis Antetokounmpo and the return of Marc Gasol to achieve his first victory against the Milwaukee Buck 118-112 in the third game of the series that the Americans dominate 2-1.

Gasol scored four 3-pointers from eight attempts, including one in the final overtime that put a point ahead of the Raptors and raised the spirits of his team.

With three Spanish players on track (Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka in the Raptors and Nikola Mirotic in the Bucks) two issues were key in the third game of a series that the Bucks dominated 2-0.

First, if those from Milwaukee could maintain the high scoring capacity of their bench in the second game scored 54 points.
And second, if Marc Gasol would recover his scoring instinct. In the first game of the series, the Catalan center left the court with six points of 11 attempts. But in the second game, it was even worse: two points of nine attempts.

Gasol’s lack of scoring ability allows his defender, Brook Lopez, to forget about scoring and can help his teammates defend other Raptors.

From the first minute, Gasol understood perfectly that he could not repeat his performance and in the first few minutes he did not wrinkle facing the opposing ring. It was Gasol who, in the first two minutes of the game, opened the triple box for the Raptors, forcing the defense of the Bucks to open.

The second shot of the Spanish pivot was also a triple, which put the score at 11-5. The success of Gasol before the board of the Bucks was accompanied in the opening minutes by Siakam. Before the middle of the first quarter was reached, the Raptors were 11 points ahead.

The Raptors went all out from the first minute, imposing their defensive pressure on the Bucks to which the success of the shots joined, just what the Canadian team had missed in the second game of the tie.

In the painting of the Raptors, the team of Mirotic and Pau Gasol were not successful in the first quarter, which ended with 30-21 for the Toronto and with the great star of the Milwaukee, Giannis Antetokounmpo with only two points in his marker. Substitute Geroge Hill was the top scorer of his team.

Opposite, another substitute, Norman Powell, was the top scorer, with 10 points, followed by Gasol and Siakam with 8, while Kawhi Leonard had to be content with 4.

In the second quarter, Gasol’s three-pointers dried up but Leonard came into the game more. While the Bucks were also intoned and started hurting the Raptors.

The Milwaukee reduced the distance to four points in the last minutes before the break and could have gone to the locker room with only one point difference if it had not been because Ibaka scored a triple when the horn sounded.

To the rest it was arrived with a 58-51 in the marker and a Gasol touched after to have received his third personnel to the 18 minutes of the party.
Then the situation continued to get worse for the Raptors who could not count on the scoring effectiveness of their star, Leonard, and they had to rely on Siakam and Powell to stay ahead on the scoreboard.

Gasol and Ibaka also contributed, but in the third time, the Bucks won the hand of the Toronto team, especially because the Raptors insisted on losing possession by giving the ball to the opponent. The Bucks scored 24 points in the third quarter versus 19 of the Raptors.

With a 77-75 on the scoreboard at the opening of the fourth quarter, the Raptors were destined to have to sweat extra in the last 12 minutes if they wanted to take the third game of the series.

The last quarter was a heart attack for the followers of the Raptors. Two fundamental players for the Raptors, Kyle Lowry and Norman Powell, had to leave the game due to personal accumulation. But Leonard reappeared.

With 4 minutes to go, the Bucks tied at 88 points. With 7 seconds left, Siakam missed two free throws and gave the Bucks the opportunity that Middleton took to tie at 96.
The first overtime ended with a draw at 103 after Leonard missed the last shot. In the second, the game was taken by the team that made the least mistakes: Toronto.

In the end, Leonard was again the top scorer of the game with 36 points, followed by Siakam, with 25. Gasol got 16 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists while Ibaka had five points and six rebounds.

In the Bucks, Hill 24 points, Malcolm Brogdon 20, Lopez 16 and Antetokounmpo 12 points. Mirotic meanwhile scored 10 points and five rebounds. (EFE)

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