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VanVleet gets ready for NBA Playoffs

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Frank Gunn  The Canadian Press

DeRozan is shooting a career-high 47 percent from the field, and while he isn't much of a three-point shooter or a passer, his ability to simply put the ball in the basket makes him one of the most risky offensive players in the league. Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry (7) protects the ball from Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) during second-half NBA playoff basketball game action in Toronto, Saturday, April 15, 2017. The Milwaukee Bucks are averaging 103.6 points on 47.4 percent shooting and allowing 103.8 points on 45.8 percent shooting. Their only Game 1 victory was in the 2001 Eastern Conference semifinals against the Philadephia 76ers, a series they lost in seven games.

DeMar DeRozan scored 27 points, but it wasn't almost enough to lift the Raptors over a young and inspired Milwaukee Bucks team that roared to a 97-83 victory to take Game 1 of the opening round of the playoffs on Saturday.

After clinching a playoff berth on last week with a win over the 76ers, Antetokounmpo said, "We aren't going to be fun to play in the playoffs, because we have nothing to lose". "He understands being a great player sometimes you're going to draw a lot of attention and sometimes you've got to get other guys involved". Let's break down their first round opponent, the three seed Toronto Raptors, before Game 1 on Saturday. "I just missed some shots tonight", Lowry said.

"The kid plays so hard, he has a heart as big as this table", Casey said. Now, they'd like to advance past the first round for the first time since going to the conference finals in 2001 with Ray Allen and Glenn Robinson leading the way.

DeMarre Carroll was nearly as bad, but Lowry means more to this team and he needs to deliver when Game 2 tips off Tuesday.

Greg Monroe played a vital role off the bench, scoring 14 points and 15 rebounds to give the Bucks' offence a much-needed jolt. Cory Joseph is a criminally underrated point guard and Norman Powell just keeps getting better. The Raps are 0-8 in the opening game of first-round playoff series, and 1-10 overall in Game 1s.

"He reminds me so much of a young Magic Johnson as far as his length, his size, the way he can pass the ball", Casey said. "We've been there before". Ujiri has a pretty good feeling it has.

"He had some good looks, he just missed some shots", Casey said. He's averaged 17.3 points on 48 percent shooting and 7.8 assists since his return.

Is there a case for Bucks coach Jason Kidd? They have become the talk of the East with the Bucks as teams no one wants to see in the first round.

This was exciting news for the Raptors because it meant the team could go back to winning games through defense - "the Casey way".

The Bucks took a five-point lead into the fourth quarter and stretched it to 14 after four minutes.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 20 points, and Tony Parker added 18 to help San Antonio win its ninth straight over Memphis in the postseason.

He rejoined the Pacers on March 30 and was pivotal in them going 5-1 to make the playoffs. Middleton's fadeaway jumper made it a 10-point lead with 9:33 to play.

Giannis Antetokounmpo showed the way for the Bucks, who were outscored 16-29 in the second but took control 29-19 third quarter.

The NBA 2K17 simulation has Toronto sweeping the Milwaukee Bucks before running into Cleveland in the second round. This is how Milwaukee defended them in the regular season.

The second game on Saturday's schedule of National Basketball Association playoff games is between the Bucks and the Raptors. Jonas Valanciunas finished with nine points and nine boards.

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