Danny Green on Raptors' Game 1 Loss vs. Bucks: 'I Felt Like We Let It Slip Away'

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistMay 16, 2019

Toronto Raptors' Danny Green is fouled by Milwaukee Bucks' George Hill during the second half of Game 1 of the NBA Eastern Conference basketball playoff finals Wednesday, May 15, 2019, in Milwaukee. The Bucks won 108-100 to take a 1-0 lead in the series. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Morry Gash/Associated Press

The Toronto Raptors led the Milwaukee Bucks for the majority of Game 1 on Wednesday night, but it was Giannis Antetokounmpo and Co. who walked away victorious to start the Eastern Conference Finals.

Toronto guard Danny Green understands his team missed a golden opportunity.

"When you've got a team down like that you've got to be mature enough and professional enough to try to keep them there," Green said after the 108-100 loss, per TSN's Josh Lewenberg. "Obviously it's a great ball club over there, but this is one I thought we could have gotten...I felt like we let it slip away."

Milwaukee scored eight of the game's first 11 points, but Toronto would quickly gain control. The Raptors finished the opening period on a 31-15 run and led by as many as 13.

For much of the night, they appeared to be in position to steal home-court advantage. From the 8:44 mark in the first to the 9:56 mark in the fourth, a span of more than 34 consecutive minutes of game time, the Raptors held a lead.

Unfortunately for them, they were outscored 32-17 in the final period to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

All-Star point guard Kyle Lowry (5-of-7 in the fourth) did what he could to lead Toronto to victory, but he didn't receive enough help from his teammates. The rest of the Raptors went 1-of-16 from the floor in the fourth, allowing the Bucks to finish on a 10-0 run over the final three minutes and 31 seconds.

Green went 0-of-2 in the fourth, leaving him just 1-of-5 on the night. He finished the game with six points and six rebounds, also committing three turnovers.

While the Raptors franchise has never made it past the conference finals, Green (and Kawhi Leonard) played in a pair of NBA Finals during his time with the San Antonio Spurs. He won a ring with the Spurs in 2014, and he is a Ray Allen shot away from being a two-time champion.

In other words, he knows a thing or two about postseason basketball.

Toronto fell to 3-15 in Game 1s all-time with the loss. The good news for the Raptors is they do have experience in bouncing back from a series-opening loss this postseason. After dropping Game 1 against the Orlando Magic in the first round, they ran off four straight victories to advance.

Of course, Milwaukee—the owner of the NBA's best record (60-22) during the regular season—figures to be a tougher challenge than Orlando. It's worth noting the Bucks are now 4-1 against the Raptors this season.

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