Raptors rout Bucks to tie up East Finals

Arun SrinivasanContributor
Yahoo Canada Sports
Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo handles the ball against Toronto's Kawhi Leonard during Eastern Conference Finals action at Scotiabank Arena. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NBAE via Getty Images)
Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo handles the ball against Toronto's Kawhi Leonard during Eastern Conference Finals action at Scotiabank Arena. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Toronto Raptors evened the Eastern Conference Finals with a 120-102 victory on Tuesday.

Here’s how it happened.

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4th quarter

We’re back to where we started. Raptors defeat Bucks 120-102.

Leonard checks out for the Raptors with 3:39 remaining in the fourth quarter and it appears to be over for all intents and purposes. 114-95 Raptors

The Bucks go on a 4-0 run but it’s countered with a Lowry stepback three. Ilyasova responds with a quick bucket and after Powell misses a bucket, Middleton gets to the line, and gets one of two attempts to go. 107-91 Raptors

After Powell drains another jumper, the Bucks call timeout. It’s the most dominant game the Raptors have played to date and appear to be cruising through the fourth. 104-84 Raptors

VanVleet opens the scoring with a quick shimmy, getting the layup. Antetokounmpo gets two free throws to fall and after a dead sequence, VanVleet again hits another three. 99-82 Raptors

3rd quarter

Brogdon finally gets on the board with his first bucket of the game. However, Powell continues to be red-hot and gets another three. Giannis blocks out the raucous crowd for a quick jumper and Lowry misses a shot, as the quarter ends. 94-81 Raptors

Drake is absolutely loving life right now.

Powell remains on fire with a corner three, then stops Malcolm Brogdon on the other end. It pays off immediately, as Kawhi gets a stepback jumper, and the Bucks call a timeout. Nick Nurse is seen applauding, and we don’t blame him one bit. 86-74 Raptors

Giannis continues to struggle at the free-throw line, getting one of two attempts to go. Ilyasova fouls Gasol for no apparent reason, sending the Raptors into the bonus. Gasol hits both free throws and the lead is back up to nine. 81-72 Raptors

Antetokounmpo misses a jumper, but Siakam misses a wide-open corner three. Middleton continues his strong form with a jumper and appears content to the lone reliable Bucks scorer tonight outside of Antetokounmpo. However, Gasol finds Siakam this time with a great pass inside, and he finishes it easily. 79-71 Raptors

Gasol drills an open three after receiving an excellent feed from Siakam. Giannis counters with a spin move in the paint and gets a layup. After a Leonard jumper falls short, Green gets his fourth foul of the game after making mild contact with Antetokounmpo. Middleton finds Ilyasova for a quick bucket and after a sloppy Raptors turnover, Middleton hits a three. 76-69 Raptors

Leonard continues to heat up, finishing a two-handed slam. Gasol stops Lopez from generating a shot attempt and the Raptors turn up the court, where Siakam slams into Middleton, gets the bucket and the foul. A timeout is called and Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer doesn’t seem pleased. 72-60 Raptors

Leonard’s slow start to the game is over! Heading downhill, Leonard elevates and dunks on an outstretched Antetokounmpo, then completes the and-1 opportunity. 68-57 Raptors

Middleton opens the quarter with a quick bucket, and Lowry misses his first shot of the quarter. Antetokounmpo tries driving through multiple defenders but gets called for a charge. 65-57 Raptors

2nd quarter

Toronto’s bench outscored Milwaukee’s by a 28-8 margin during the first half.

Lowry leads all scorers with 18 points, while Middleton has a team-best 16 points for the Bucks. In the battle of the superstars, Leonard has five points and five rebounds on 1-of-5 shooting, while Antetokounmpo posted 14 points, seven rebounds, three blocks on 5-of-10 shooting.

Inexplicably, Lowry is fouled by Middleton with 1.9 seconds remaining and goes to the line again, nailing both free throws. Milwaukee tries another three with the clock expiring but it hits the backboard and Toronto enters halftime with a 10-point lead. 65-55 Raptors

With the shot clock winding down, Lowry finds Mirotic on a mismatch and easily draws a foul, nailing both free throws. Giannis tries to finish through contact and gets fouled, drilling both shots.

Powell drills another three for the Raptors and continues to be a key contributor for them as the series progresses. After Powell misses a three-pointer, Middleton responds with a three of his own, but Lowry gets fouled on the next possession and gets to the charity stripe, hitting both attempts. 61-53 Raptors

Ibaka hits a quick jumper and is easily having his best half of the series. Leonard partially blocks a Mirotic attempt, then drives hard to the rim, putting the Bucks in the spin cycle and gets a foul call on Lopez. Kawhi hits both free throws and an eight-point lead is restored. 56-48 Raptors

VanVleet goes strong to the rim but can’t get a layup to fall. After Hill secures the rebound, Lowry is called for a questionable foul. Hill goes to the line, an audible “Ref, you suck” chant begins and stops after the Bucks’ guard hits his first free throw, and then gets the second to drop. 52-48 Raptors

Where has this version of VanVleet been? He hits another three on an open look, and the Raptors’ bench has contributed 23 points thus far. 52-45 Raptors

Lowry’s three-point attempt rolls off the rim, and Middleton responds with another three. On the next possession, Siakam takes advantage of a blown Bucks coverage and drives baseline for a basket. 47-40 Raptors

Giannis drives through contact and finds Middleton for a corner three. Ibaka continues to roll and hits a quick jumper. Both teams trade misses and after Lowry goes up to stop Antetokounmpo at the rim, a foul is called. The crowd disagrees and Giannis misses the first attempt, but gets the second. 45-37 Raptors

Middleton gets a floater to fall and Ibaka misses a three-point attempt that would’ve brought the house down, again. However, Ibaka simply can’t be stopped right now and Leonard finds him cutting to the lane for another bucket. 43-33 Raptors

Powell continues to be a spark off the bench for the Raptors, completing the and-1 opportunity. Mirotic’s three-pointer rims out and after a frantic possession from the Raptors, Ibaka corrals another offensive rebound, and slams it down, leading to a timeout. Scotiabank Arena hasn’t been louder throughout the series. 41-31 Raptors

Ibaka comes up huge with an offensive rebound, spins, and gets the jumper to fall. Ibaka continues to be a defensive force too, forcing a miss from Giannis and on the next possession, Antetokounmpo is called for goaltending on Green. 36-31 Raptors

1st quarter

Leonard’s been relatively quiet through the first quarter but earns two free throws and nails the first one but the second rims out. Mirotic attempts a three from well beyond the line but it caroms off the rim and falls harmlessly out of bounds to end the quarter. 32-31 Raptors

A three-second violation is called on the Raptors, and Middleton hits the ensuing free throw. With the Bucks retaining possession, Antetokounmpo slices past Ibaka for a layup. Norman Powell is unfazed and hits a three to tie the game. 31-31

Fred VanVleet comes alive with a huge three and he’ll need to continue to be in this form for the rest of the series. After some brief inactivity, Antetokounmpo drives through contact again and gets to the line. Upon missing his first free throw, the Scotiabank Arena crowd erupts, but he sinks his second free throw. 28-27 Bucks

Lopez continues to be dangerous from deep, hitting an open three. Ibaka misses a three-point attempt but the Bucks can’t capitalize, missing their next shot. 27-24 Bucks

Eric Bledsoe dodges a travel call and gets a tough layup to drop. Serge Ibaka is fouled and earns two free throws on the next sequence, draining them both. 24-24

Leonard’s jumper rolls around the rim and falls, and then he stuffs Giannis near the rim. Unfortunately for the Raptors, a soft foul is called that sends Ersan Ilyasova to the line, and he hits one of two free throws. On the next series, Gasol drains a three and it’s tied again. 22-22

Gasol responds immediately with a three of his own, then Green forces a steal, and finds Lowry in transition for a layup. Mirotic then comes back and hits a tough stepback, but Lowry is on fire and gets another bucket. Khris Middleton awakens and gets a shot to fall, and following a Raptors’ miss, Antetokounmpo breezes to the rim for a layup. 21-17 Bucks

Lowry gets another corner three, and on the next possession, Gasol defends Lopez perfectly, forcing the ball out of bounds. Lowry then draws a foul on Lopez and gets to the line, and drains both free throws. All good things must come to an end, however, and George Hill hits a three for the Bucks. 15-10 Bucks

Kyle Lowry connects for a three, but Brook Lopez immediately responds in equal measure for the Bucks. And stop me if you’ve heard this before, but Antetokounmpo blows past multiple Raptors for another booming dunk and a timeout is called. The Bucks’ superstar looks like the MVP minutes into the first quarter. 12-5 Bucks

Danny Green gets a quick layup to get the Raptors on the board. Unfortunately, Giannis is proving nearly impossible to stop, driving baseline for a thunderous, uncontested slam. 7-2 Bucks

Giannis Antetokounmpo showes off why he’s so dangerous in transition, stealing the ball from Pascal Siakam, and drives to the rim for an easy layup. After a three-point attempt from Marc Gasol falls short, Antetokounmpo kicks it out to Nikola Mirotic, who drains a three. 5-0 Bucks


Toronto Maple Leafs center Nazem Kadri is in the house and is feeling good about the Raptors’ chances.

Kawhi Leonard simply doesn’t fear the Drake Curse.

Our own William Lou, Amit Mann and Kishan Mistry are at Scotiabank Arena for Game 4. Follow @william_lou@Amit_Mann and @_kishanmistry throughout the series.

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