What Led the Milwaukee Bucks to Become the Champions After 50 Years?

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Paul Sancya

What Led the Milwaukee Bucks to Become the Champions After 50 Years?


The victory against the Phoenix Suns in the sixth game of the 2020-21 NBA finals made the Milwaukee Bucks the champions for the first time in the last five decades. 

The Milwaukee Bucks will be remembered for many reasons, like their resilience, defense, tough play down low, and their superstar player Giannis Antetokounmpo – who earned the first Finals MVP award of his NBA career. 

We can also not forget Khris Middleton who is currently playing for the US in the Olympics without any break for celebrating the massive victory. 

One of the biggest factors behind the Bucks’ remarkable win is how the team uses some of the most effective basketball ball handling drills in its training and applies them successfully on the battleground. 

In case you want to make these dribbling drills a part of your coaching regime, you can learn how to do so at Blazepod

Without any further ado, let’s come back to the topic at hand – exploring the main reasons that made it possible for these Bucks what was only a dream for their predecessors for half a century. 

1. The Talented Leader – Giannis Antetokounmpo 

Words cannot do justice to the great player Antetokounmpo has been over the last few years. The way he has come back and won after multiple post-season setbacks speaks of his talent, ability, and strength. 

The flaws that Giannis has, like any other sportsman, have also been documented and highlighted, but they do not make him any less of a perfect player. 

Even if you take his flaws into consideration, you’d have to admit that Giannis is gifted. You cannot ignore the fact that this almost 7-foot man tries his hardest to attack the basket and succeeds often. When he is not aiming for the basket, he utilizes his long arms to make the ball available to others in his team. 

If you want proof of that, look at the way he so gracefully executed the game that made his team the champions. This talented man not only scored 50 points on 25 shots but also got the second-best spot in championship history following 1993. 

In addition to that, he also has 14 rebounds and 5 blocks to his credit from the same game. That makes him the first player to have a 50/14/5 stat line in a championship final since 1962.

It is not only the performance of the superstar player but also the way he inspires his teammates that made the win possible for the Bucks.

2. The Most Resilient Team in Recent History 

When the Bucks dropped the initial couple of games Eastern Conference semi-final matchup against the Brooklyn Nets, their chances of winning appeared bleak. After dropping game 5 of the series, this was another indication that they will not be the winners.

In game 7, they had to go overtime. It was a team when Brooklyn’s Durant was in full form, breathing fire onto the Bucks. However, the Bucks fought back, and it ended with the scoreboard reading 4-3.

The next step in their journey was facing defeat in game 1 at the hands of Trae Young and Co. in the Eastern Conference Finals. Then they also had to make do without Antetokounmpo until game 4. 

The team showed great resilience and came out to be among the top six teams and qualified for the championship even without their leader Antetokounmpo.

The struggle did not end even after securing a spot in the championship. They had to face the well-rested Suns team when they were already exhausted with the efforts to get the chance to compete in the championship. 

The start of the championship saw them losing two games and going down a total of 23 points. That was when the team fought back and won the next four games in a row. It was the first time that Phoenix lost four in a row. 

It tells us one thing; the Bucks won because of their extreme resilience and courage that kept them going in the face of defeat. 

3. These Players Used Their Size 

Many consider that the modern NBA games are perimeter-oriented, and guards are the most important pieces of the puzzle. They are right for the most part, but you just cannot deny how much size matters in this game.

This year’s championship showed how the Bucks used their massive size to their advantage. They just used their mass and height to get the work done, and they were very good at it. 

It is reflected in the stats that show that they allowed their opponents to shoot a mere 59.7% of the shots from within five feet of the basket. That is the stingiest rate of any game played this year. 

4. They Had Impeccable Defense

There is no denying that the Bucks’ defense was horrible in the regular season. They were ranked at the ninth spot in terms of defense even though they had all the players needed for effective defense. 

However, being a team that does not take defeat as an answer, they worked on it and got it right. While they were giving up 110.7 points for every 100 possessions in the regular season, they gave only 106.8 per 100 possessions in the playoffs, the best stat of any playoff team. 

Having great defense can make the difference between winning and losing, as the Bucks demonstrated in this championship.

5. They Had the Best Luck of All Teams

The Bucks’ victory might not have been possible without luck. You cannot ignore the fact that they had no major injuries in the postseason run. Antetokounmpo did get a bad knee twist, but he recovered fast and had to miss just two games. 

This, combined with the fact that other teams were not so lucky and had injured players, made the win possible for Bucks. 

To Wrap Up 

The way the Milwaukee Bucks won the championship this year is just awesome. It is the first victory for the team in 50 years, and the names of the players that made it possible need to be written in gold. It was made possible by their incredible team leader, talented players, resilience, defense, and luck.


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