MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks had their backs up against the wall in an 0-2 hole, but when they took home court for Game 3 on Sunday, they did not disappoint.
Giannis Antetokounmpo became just the second player ever with back-to-back 40 and 10 games in the NBA Finals as he went for 41 points and 12 rebounds.
Meanwhile the Suns allowed scoring runs for Milwaukee in the second and third quarters that we haven't seen from them in the first two games of the Finals. Devin Booker also had his second lowest scoring total in a game all year with just 10 points.
Madden said a big part of Giannis' production on Sunday was getting DeAndre Ayton into foul trouble.
"That was I think part of the storyline tonight, but, again, the Suns are basically letting him get into single coverage and he's just going at them, getting downhill and make plays," Madden said on Locked On Today.
Giannis, who went down with a hyperextended knee in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals was doubtful up until the day before Game 1 of the NBA Finals, but he played 35 minutes in Game 1 and full minutes in Games 2 and 3. He's averaging 34 points per game in the Finals and nearly 14 rebounds.
"It's still amazing to think less than two weeks ago thinking his season is probably over to maybe he plays in the Finals, to hopefully he can last in the Finals, to we just saw two of the best back-to-back performances we've ever seen in the history of the Finals," Madden said.
Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday were also big parts of scoring runs in the second and third quarters after they both struggled in Game 2, combining for just 28 points going 12-for-35 from the field. On Sunday, they combined to go 50% from the field, combining for 39 points.
Should the Suns be concerned?
Locked On Suns host Brendon Kleen explained why the Suns faced a dip in production on Sunday, saying it jumps out to you how a lot of Phoenix's best players didn't play a lot of minutes.
"We don't know what's going on with Devin Booker, why he has been absent from some of these late game situations," Kleen said. "DeAndre Ayton, the foul trouble in the third quarter. The Suns cut it to four points and he wasn't on the court when they have to go to a new lineup and they lose that momentum. Mikal Bridges had a poor night, Chris Paul didn't have to be out there late because the game got out of hand."
The Bucks completely took over with a 16-0 run at the end of the third quarter when Ayton was off the floor.
Meanwhile, does Phoenix have any sort of answer for Giannis? When he's playing like this, they don't, Kleen said.
"The Suns need to beat the other guys, they need to win on their margins and if Giannis scores 40, they probably can't do much about that. You look at 28 assists and just nine turnovers for the Bucks, that can't happen," Kleen said. "If Giannis is going to score 40, you can't let Khris Middleton, Jrue Holiday, Bobby Portis have big games on top of that."
Also on today's Locked On Today:
- The Pirates select Louisville catcher Henry Davis with first pick in MLB Draft.
- Police confiscated more than a dozen weapons and 1,000 rounds of ammunition from a hotel near Coors Field in Denver, Colorado, the site of Tuesday’s Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
- There’s still plenty of hatred towards the Astros, which made what Jose Altuve did to the Yankees that much sweeter for Locked On Astros and all Astros fans…
- Italy claimed a first European Championship since 1968 after goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma saved twice in a dramatic 3-2 penalty shootout victory in the Euro 2020 final against England at Wembley on Sunday.
- Novak Djokovic tied Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal by claiming his 20th Grand Slam title Sunday.
SUBSCRIBE: The Locked On Bucks Podcast is your daily podcast for all things Milwaukee Bucks. Listen for free wherever you get your podcasts.
SUBSCRIBE: The Locked On Suns Podcast is your daily podcast for all things Phoenix Suns. Listen for free wherever you get your podcasts.