National Basketball Association
Preview
Detroit at Milwaukee
When: 8:00 PM ET, Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Where: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The Detroit Pistons felt the absence of Blake Griffin in Game 1 on Sunday, but even the return of an All-Star might not have been enough to overcome the Milwaukee Bucks. The Pistons will try to bounce back and steal homecourt advantage from the NBA-best Bucks when they visit Milwaukee for Game 2 on Wednesday.

Detroit fell behind 38-18 after the first quarter in Game 1 and was never in the contest before finally falling 121-86. "We didn't meet the level of physicality and then we tried - we got some cheap fouls," Pistons coach Dwane Casey told reporters. "The speed of the game, we've got to get up to. We were all over the map defensively. Didn't get anything done. But we've got another level we have to get to with our intensity, physicality, because they're coming through there with violence, Euro stepping, throwing elbows. We've got to make sure we get our level of competitiveness up to start the game. You can't spot a great team like this that many points and expect to get back into it." Most of those drives to the basket from the Bucks were coming from MVP candidate Giannis Antetokounmpo, who breezed to 24 points and 17 rebounds in 23 minutes. "I just tried to be aggressive," Antetokounmpo told reporters. "I wanted to start the game aggressive. I knew if I was in aggressive mode all game, good things would happen."

TV: 8 p.m. ET, NBATV, FS Detroit, FS Wisconsin (Milwaukee)

ABOUT THE PISTONS: Griffin battled a knee injury at the end of the regular season and was held out of Game 1 by the medical staff, which will have the final say in when he returns. "He's itching to play," Casey told reporters of Griffin. "He's lobbying. He wants to play. It's the medical staff. The doctors are the ones who are making those decisions. Not me. Not Blake. That's what we're working with. We have an excellent medical staff. When his body says he's ready - whether it's Wednesday night or Saturday - he'll be available." Luke Kennard led Detroit with 21 points off the bench in Game 1 while center Andrew Drummond was held to 12 points on 4-of-9 shooting before drawing a flagrant 2 foul and being ejected.

ABOUT THE BUCKS: Milwaukee coach Mike Budenholzer praised his team's readiness to start the playoffs and Antetokounmpo echoed those statements while questioning the readiness of his opponents. "I don't know if they were ready for us," Antetokounmpo told reporters. "We just tried to focus on ourselves." Seven players scored in double figures for the Bucks, who knocked down 15 3-pointers and totaled 31 assists on 44 field goals while outscoring the Pistons in the paint 52-38 in the easy win.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Griffin drew a technical foul while on the bench in Game 1 for arguing after Drummond was ejected.

2. Milwaukee PF Nikola Mirotic (thumb) scored four points in 15 minutes off the bench after missing the final 11 games of the regular season.

3. Detroit PF Thon Maker, who started in place of Griffin, was held to four points on 2-of-10 shooting, including 0-of-6 from 3-point range.

PREDICTION: Bucks 116, Pistons 96
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Detroit 41-42 L1 26-15 15-27 5-9 36-33 8-9 27-26
Milwaukee 61-22 W1 34-8 27-14 6-6 55-16 15-2 41-12
Last Meeting
Detroit Milwaukee
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
4/14/19 DET 86 MIL 121 86 46 38.0 121 54 48.9
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Detroit L. Kennard 21 57.1 1
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 24 52.9 5
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Detroit A. Drummond 12 2 10
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 17 3 14
Assists Player  
Detroit I. Smith 6
Milwaukee S. Brown 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Detroit B. Griffin 1903 46.3 428
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 2090 58.0 517
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Detroit A. Drummond 1315 451 864
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 950 166 784
Assists Player  
Detroit B. Griffin 413
Milwaukee E. Bledsoe 448
Quickchart Matchup
Detroit Detroit Off vs  Milwaukee Milwaukee Defense
Detroit Off vs Milwaukee - Points For 106.8 Points For
Detroit Off vs Milwaukee - Points Against 109.0 Points Against
Detroit - FG% 43.9 FG%
Milwaukee - FG% 43.3 FG%
Detroit - Reb 45.0 Reb
Milwaukee - Reb 45.3 Reb
Milwaukee Milwaukee Off vs  Detroit Detroit Defense
Milwaukee Off vs Detroit - Points For 118.2 Points For
Milwaukee Off vs Detroit - Points Against 107.5 Points Against
Milwaukee - FG% 47.6 FG%
Detroit - FG% 47.0 FG%
Milwaukee - Reb 49.8 Reb
Detroit - Reb 43.8 Reb