How do you turn things after your team loses four games straight?
If you’re Jason Kidd and the Milwaukee Bucks (8-6), you win four games straight.
Coach Kidd and his young Bucks capped off their fourth victory in as many games with an incredible defensive performance, racking up an astonishing 16 blocks en route to a 99-95 win over a Detroit team that’s having a very good season so far.
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) November 16, 2017
It’s been a complete 180 from just a week ago, with Milwaukee racking up wins against San Antonio on Nov. 10 (94-87), Los Angeles on Nov. 11 (98-90) and Memphis on Nov. 13 (110-103).
The Bucks’ official Twitter feed took note.
THE BLEDSOE EFFECT
One aspect of the Bucks’ current winning streak that can’t be overlooked: the addition of Eric Bledsoe.
Milwaukee is undefeated since Blesdoe arrived via trade, and as Matt Velasquez perfectly explained in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, that’s not a coincidence—especially not on Wednesday night.
With the game tied at 93, Bledsoe brought the ball up the court and the Bucks ran a pick-and-roll for him with Giannis Antetokounmpo setting the screen. As Antetokounmpo rolled, Pistons guard Ish Smith went with him and forward Anthony Tolliver retreated to cut off a potential pass to the Bucks’ star.
That’s exactly what Bledsoe thought would happen and he took advantage, pulling up and calmly swishing a 15-footer with 42.5 seconds left to give the Bucks a lead they would not relinquish.
“He read the play perfectly,” head coach Jason Kidd said. “I told him after the game that this is what we have to help with the younger players. He had a turnover early on a bounce pass to Giannis and he felt that everybody was going to run to Giannis on the same play and that he could get that shot. It just shows his maturity and his IQ and just playing for the moment. That was a big shot for us to help us win.”