Giannis Antetokounmpo, Bucks Rally to Take Game 1 vs. Kawhi Leonard, Raptors
MILWAUKEE, WI - MAY 15: Giannis Antetokounmpo #34 of the Milwaukee Bucks handles the ball against the Toronto Raptors during Game One of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on May 15, 2019 at the Fiserv Forum Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images).

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Brook Lopez scored a team-high 29 points and Giannis Antetokounmpo added 24 points, 14 rebounds and six assists as the No. 1 seed Milwaukee Bucks beat the No. 2 Toronto Raptors 108-100 in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Wednesday.

Kawhi Leonard scored 31 points for the visiting Raptors, who trail the Bucks 1-0 in the best-of-seven series. Kyle Lowry posted 30 points on 10-of-15 shooting, including 7-of-9 from three-point range.

The Raptors led by 13 points in the first quarter and held an 83-76 edge heading into the fourth. However, the Bucks outscored Toronto 32-17 in the final 12 minutes thanks in part to 13 Lopez points.

Toronto led 100-98 with 3:31 left, but the Bucks went on a 10-0 game-ending run. The Raptors missed eight straight shots during that stretch.

Brogdon Is Bucks’ Key To Making NBA Finals

Malcolm Brogdon is only two games into his return after he missed nearly two months with a minor plantar fascia tear in his right foot, but he’s been fantastic in limited action.

The ex-Virginia star scored 10 points in 17 minutes to close out the Bucks’ second-round playoff series against the Boston Celtics, and he followed that up with 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting against the Raptors in Game 1, finishing a team-high plus-18.

He didn’t take long to make an impact Wednesday, per Kevin Pelton of ESPN:

Kevin Pelton @kpelton

Since Brogdon got into the game, he’s got 11 points in 11 minutes and has knocked down three 3-pointers. He’s a team-high +9.

ESPN’s Tim Bontemps noted how good the Bucks looked with him on the court:

Tim Bontemps @TimBontemps

Have to think Malcolm Brogdon is going to return to the starting lineup in Game 2. Bucks have looked much better when he’s been on the court tonight. (Team-high plus-6).

Brogdon came through for Milwaukee after Toronto surged out to an early lead in the first quarter. Of note, he nailed a three-pointer to cut the Bucks’ deficit to 30-21 late in the frame:

Milwaukee Bucks @Bucks

The PR3Z!! 🇺🇸


Milwaukee needed his second-quarter scoring output as well. His eight points during that frame helped keep the Bucks within eight heading into halftime.

Brogdon hit three of six three-pointers on a night where his team largely struggled from beyond the arc. Scott Grodsky of CBS 58 pointed to the differential after three quarters:

Scott Grodsky @ScottGrodsky

#Bucks not named Malcolm Brogdon are 3-28 (10.7%) from 3 tonight and they are only down 7 going into the 4th.

I’m sorry but to me that’s a really encouraging stat for this series because they simply will not shoot that poorly throughout

Milwaukee got hot in the fourth en route to a series-opening win, but the Bucks wouldn’t have been in position for the comeback sans the President’s efforts.

Brogdon will need more nights like that for Milwaukee to make its first NBA Finals in 45 years, but he’s capable of doing so. He finished second on the team in true-shooting percentage, third in win shares per 48 minutes, third in player efficiency rating and third in offensive box plus-minus, per Basketball Reference.

He’s one of the most valuable players on the team and came back to the lineup right on time. If his Game 1 performance is symbolic of what to expect from him in this series, the Bucks will be difficult to beat.

What’s Next?

Milwaukee will host Toronto for Game 2 on Friday at 8:30 p.m. ET. TNT will televise the game.

This article will be updated to provide more information soon.

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