NBA Playoffs 2019: Friday's Live Stream Schedule, TV Info, Odds and More

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistMay 17, 2019

Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo, middle, drives to the basket between Toronto Raptors' Pascal Siakam (43) and Serge Ibaka (9) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019, in Milwaukee. The Raptors won 123-116. (AP Photo/Aaron Gash)
Aaron Gash/Associated Press

Many expected the Eastern Conference Finals to produce a duel of superstars between Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo and Toronto's Kawhi Leonard, but the role players stole the show in Game 1. 

The question entering Friday's Game 2 at Fiserv Forum is if Brook Lopez, Kyle Lowry and others can shine in starring or supporting roles for the second straight game. 

The Bucks are looking to protect home-court advantage just like they did in the first round against Detroit. 

Toronto is in search of its fourth road win of the postseason. A Game 2 victory would be the most important result of the playoffs for Nick Nurse's team, which would have a chance to take control of the series at Scotiabank Arena. 


Friday NBA Playoffs Information

Game 2: Toronto at Milwaukee

Start Time: 8:30 p.m. ET 


Live Stream: 



Odds via OddsChecker.

Milwaukee (-270; Bet $270 to win $100) 

Toronto (+240; Bet $100 to win $240)


Can Lowry Produce At a High Level Again for Toronto? 

Lowry finally made a massive impact for the Raptors in Game 1, and it almost paid off in the form of a victory. 

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 15:  Kyle Lowry #7 of the Toronto Raptors dribbles the ball while being guarded by Eric Bledsoe #6 of the Milwaukee Bucks in the first quarter in Game One of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at the Fiserv F
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

In order to challenge the Bucks again in Game 2, Lowry has to produce at a similar clip to the 30 points he scored Wednesday. 

Before Wednesday, Lowry reached 20 or more points in two of Toronto's 12 playoff games.

Wednesday's performance also differed from the regular-season numbers Lowry recorded against the Bucks. He scored 19 points in three contests against the Bucks prior to the Eastern Conference Finals. 

By adding a third scoring threat alongside Kawhi Leonard and Pascal Siakam, the Raptors have more of a well-rounded offense that can strike from different parts of the court. 

But if Lowry reverts back to the scoring form he was in at the start of the semifinal round against Philadelphia, Toronto could head back home down two games in the series. 

When the Raptors have a two-dimensional scoring attack led by Leonard and Siakam, they are easier to shut down since opponents can focus on stopping one or both of them or let the rest of the team beat them by challenging Leonard to score on a high volume of shots.


Which Role Player Steps Up Next for Milwaukee? 

An argument can be made that Milwaukee is the deepest team left in the postseason. 

In Game 1, Lopez emerged as the star by scoring 29 points, but any of the role players in the squad could produce a similar performance in Game 2. 

Morry Gash/Associated Press

In the semifinal round against Boston, George Hill came off the bench to average 14.2 points per game and Pat Connaughton hit a few key three-pointers. 

The difference in Game 2 could come from the Bucks bench when it goes up against a weaker Toronto lineup that is being rotated for stretches of the first half. 

Connaughton, Hill and Ersan Ilyasova can all fill up the scoring column during a run, and Lopez could ride a wave of confidence to put together another strong performance. 

The scoring depth is important to get past Toronto, and it will be even more important if the Bucks want to give Golden State or Portland their best shot in the NBA Finals. 

Antetokounmpo still has to show up in clutch situations, but if his teammates can thrive in supporting roles, it will alleviate some of the pressure felt by the superstar. 


Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.

Statistics obtained from Basketball Reference.


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