Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) celebrates after scoring during the second half of Game 4 in a first-round NBA basketball playoff series against the Milwaukee Bucks, Monday, April 24, 2023, in Miami. The Heat defeated the Bucks 119-114. Jimmy Buttler scored 56 points. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)

Heat Look to End Bucks Season

The Miami Heat will take on the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 5 in the first round of the NBA playoffs. They have the chance to close out the series with a win. The No. 8 Heat took advantage of home court, winning both of their games in Miami.

However, the Heat lost two of their key players to injury in Tyler Herro and Victor Oladipo. Despite this, they’ve pushed Milwaukee on the brink of elimination and they’ll look to become just the sixth No. 8 seed in NBA history to eliminate a No. 1 seed.

The Underdogs Nobody Saw Coming

Miami came into the postseason with the expectation that they would just barely make the playoffs. In fact, they finished as the No. 7 seed and lost a tough game to the Atlanta Hawks in the play-in tournament. They would go on to beat the Chicago Bulls to land the No. 8 seed and matchup with a Bucks team who had the best record in the league.

Nobody expected this Heat team to be anywhere near the position they’re in right now. They have three opportunities to finish off Milwaukee and advance to the second round of the playoffs.

Heat star Jimmy Butler has been on an absolute tear this round. In Game 4, Butler had a historic performance scoring 56 points. He has believed in this team from the start and looks to lead them to yet another deep playoff run.

Bucks’ Struggles and Key Injury

The Bucks looked like the team to beat all season long. Giannis Antetokounmpo has been in the conversation for his third MVP and led his team to the top seed in the East.

However, in Game 1 of this series, Giannis took a rough fall and injured his lower back. This kept him out of the lineup in both Games 2 and 3, allowing the Heat to take 2-1 series lead. Additionally, Milwaukee has turned the ball over at a high rate in their three losses. This gave Miami free offensive possessions when it mattered most.

Although Antetokounmpo returned the lineup in Game 4, it wasn’t enough to defeat the Heat. He did put up his third career playoff triple double and looks to be back to full strength.

About Daniel Haviv

Hello, my name is Daniel Haviv and I'm a junior sports journalism student at the University of Florida. As a sports writer, I have published content on a multitude of different sports across all levels. Additionally, I was a beat reporter for the Gators Men's Basketball team for the 2022-2023 season. Game-day previews and post-game articles are featured.

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