It turned out it wasn't. All they need to do is gain composure against this steady Celtics roster and find their legs under their dominant run-and-gun offense.
Update: The Celtics and Bucks each hit three-pointers with under a second left to force overtime.
"We're optimistic but we're not going to rush anything", Smart said.
"But we stayed resilient, went to overtime, and got the win". And if not for this Khris Middleton buzzer-beater, they would've taken the game in regulation.
"I knew they wouldn't hang their heads", Stevens said.
"I think understanding the tendencies, understanding your roles, understanding assignments, all of those things become paramount because each possession is important", Bucks coach Joe Prunty said.
Then it was Terry Rozier's turn. Kyrie Irving leads the team with 24.4 points and 5.1 assists per game in his first year with the team: he underwent a procedure to remove a tension wire from his knee March 24 and now will have a second surgery that takes him out of action for the rest of the year.
Terry Rozier finished with 23 points, Marcus Morris had 21, Jaylen Brown scored 20 and Jayson Tatum added 19 to become the first Celtics rookie since Brian Shaw in 1989 to score 15 or more in his playoff debut.
"I know the IN game when I first hurt it, it felt like there was a knot IN the ball", Smart said. And he made it.
But when Brown knocked down a three and got the crowd back in it, the C's were now only trailing by seven with less than four minutes to play in the second. Al Horford averages 12.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game.
Antetokounmpo, who finished with 35 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists and three steals, found himself in a similar situation moments earlier, when he was the beneficiary of a different kind of call.
As the Bucks get set for Game 2 on Tuesday in Boston, Antetokounmpo is hopeful that his team can clean up the mistakes that forced it into such a precarious position in the first place.
Boston leads the series 1-0.
Antetokounmpo was able to tie up Tatum for a jump ball off a defensive miss and got to the line for one shot with 53.6 seconds to go. I just got to live with that call and just move forward because that's what players do. He made two free-throws to put the Celtics in front 110-106 with 18.8 remaining.
Here are the Bucks vs Celtics game details including the live stream, start time and more.
Rozier dribbled the clock down before crossing over Eric Bledsoe, stepping back and swishing an apparent game-winner with a half-second showing on the clock. Malcolm Brogdon is the third double-digit scorer and John Henson is grabbing six rebounds.
The ability to move past mistakes is important, but so is the presence of a veteran like Horford to take control when mental mistakes strike. "It was a really good win for our group".
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Pleasant Saturday, strong to severe storms possible Sunday
Be sure to stay weather aware today and make sure you have the WBTV weather app downloaded and severe weather alerts turned on! We're watching a major storm system that's sparking a multi-state blizzard warning, stretching from Kansas to Minnesota.