Raptors beat Bucks 87-76 in slugfest, tie series at 2-2

In the usual halftime entertainment during Game 4, the Bucks set up an elaborate rib during a dunk contest with a children's hoop, as an inflatable raptor was brought out as a prop for one little girl's dunk. The Toronto Raptors were roadkill to the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday night, and another terrible game would place their playoff hopes on life support.

DeMar DeRozan shook off his dismal Game 3 performance and scored 33 points as the Toronto Raptors posted an 87-76 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday afternoon, evening their Eastern Conference best-of-seven first-round playoff series 2-2. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 19 points, eight rebounds, and four assists, while Khris Middleton had 20 points, three rebounds, and seven assists. Milwaukee hasn't won a playoff series since going to the conference finals in 2001.

Bucks All-Star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo was held to just 14 points, his lowest scoring effort in the series so far. "They ambushed us, and there's no aspect of our game that we executed whatsoever".

Powell finished with 12 points. Unless the Raptors demolish the Bucks for three straight games, I don't know how any Raptors fan isn't concerned with this team.

The Raptors looked frazzled after shooting 4 of 18 in the first quarter.

Kyle Lowry's seething silence said everything.

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Milwaukee Bucks head coach Jason Kidd reacts during the first half of Game 4 of an NBA first-round playoff series basketball game against the Toronto Raptors Saturday, April 22, 2017, in Milwaukee.

DeRozan scored eight but was 0 of 8 from the field.

The Raptors built themselves a nine-point lead before taking a 64-58 advantage into the fourth quarter in front of a loud crowd of 18,717 towel-waving fans at BMO Harris Bradley Center.

Milwaukee can take solace in the fact it was able to remain competitive deep into the fourth quarter despite an off night from Antetokounmpo.

"I've got to do a better job of finding him openings and spaces so he can vault up and use his scoring ability", Casey said. It's Game 4, we've got to be desperate.

After two tight losses in Washington exposed some bad blood between the teams, Atlanta returned home and built a 25-point lead late in the first quarter.

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"Our tempo.in that second half came to a halt", Kidd said.

Yet, after Ibaka earned a technical foul with 2:03 left in the first period, with his team trailing by 31 points, it was apparent the Raptors were the ones in dire need of some leadership. Neither team could get into a flow offensively, with an unhealthy amount of each team's shots coming at the tail end of the shot clock - if they didn't get their passes picked off first.

He was much better in Game 2, going 6 for 12, including 2 of 5 from long range.

The Bucks captured the series opener 97-83.

Trading shoves in the paint and hand-checks on the perimeter, the Bucks matched the Raptors' rise in defensive intensity. Each team made just five three-pointers for a paltry 10 of 43 combined.

"The time will come when we will get back out on there on the court but in the meantime try not to go insane in two days of waiting", DeRozan said. "They got the win and now it's our time to adjust". He followed that with a corner 3-pointer to make it a 79-69 game with four minutes left, giving Toronto its biggest lead of the night. If not, it's going to be a awful feeling again.

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