NBA finals 2021 Game 6: Phoenix Suns v Milwaukee Bucks – live!
The Devin Booker Situation
If the Suns were ahead of this series, and if a few more baskets had gone their way in Game 5 that’s what we would be looking at here, we’d be talking about Devin Booker as if he were a Finals MVP frontrunner. Instead, we’re looking at him as possibly being a problem with the Suns, despite the fact that he bounced back from a dismal Game 3 to have back-to-back nights where he scored 40 points and yet—like his fantastic near-dunk on Saturday—it won’t count if the Bucks complete their mission in today’s game.
I don’t know: maybe there is a Phoenix Suns curse. They came into the NBA Finals as heavy favorites because it looked like Giannis Antetokounmpo was going to be too injured to be anything close to 100%. Now, by Game 2, Giannis was looking like his old self, but Phoenix still managed to put together a 2-0 lead. Even when the Bucks tied it up 2-2, the Suns were headed home for Game 5 and looked like they had a good chance to pull up 3-2 and still have a potential Game 7 at home.
Instead, after a spiriting comeback attempt came short on Saturday, the Suns are heading back to Milwaukee and the Bucks have a chance to prevent this series from lasting seven. It feels like this could be another brutal finish for a Phoenix team that hasn’t won a championship in its history despite having the peaks of Charles Barkley (whose career as a gaffe-prone analyst has overshadowed his life as a dominant player during the 1990s) and Steve Nash (whose “Seven-Seconds-Or-Less Suns” never won a ring, but revolutionized professional basketball during their lifespan). It also would mean that the Point God Chris Paul would have struck out in his best chance to win his only ring. (Barkley too has experience with this.)
Of course, it’s not like the Bucks have had a history of nonstop success since they last won a championship with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar back in the 1970s. If they win it will be a remarkable achievement, especially after being completely outplayed (lest we forget) in the first two games of the series. There’s no doubt that Antetokounmpo—playing an all-around fantastic game, providing both clinching dunks and key blocks—is geared up for an NBA Finals trophy but my lord can we say a few words for Khris Middleton who has been Milwaukee’s best scorer for much of this three-game winning streak? He should be regarded as a star following this postseason.
So will the Bucks seal a championship or will the Suns force an Epic Game Seven? We don’t know, but the Larry O’Brien Trophy is in the building and that always makes things more exciting! If you want to contribute to today’s liveblog this could be the last time, maybe the last time this year, I don’t know! Email your thoughts to [email protected] or tweet them to @HunterFelt and we’ll use them as we go on. It’s Game 6 of the NBA Finals between the Phoenix Suns and the Milwaukee Bucks! Official tip-off time is 9:00 pm EST but national TV coverage means it’ll probably be a tad later and—either way—we’ll be back a lot sooner!