GAME 3: 3-0 O 2-1?

suns and bucks

MILWAUKEE — Nanguna sa NBA sa road triumphs ngayong season, tiwala ang Phoenix Suns na makukuha ang krusyal na panalo sa Milwaukee sa harap ng Bucks supporters.

Tangan ng Suns ang 2-0 kalamangan sa best-of-seven NBA Finals papasok sa Game 3 kung saan lilipat ang serye mula Arizona desert sa Great Lakes shore. Doon ay sasamahan ang in-arena fans ng libo-libong supporters ng Bucks backers na manonood sa  Deer District big-screen viewing area sa labas.

“Playing in the NBA Finals in front of the fans that have supported us all year long, and it’s been (almost) 50 years since we played one here in Milwaukee, for sure it’s going to be exciting,” wika ni Milwaukee’s Greek star Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Subalit ang Suns, dalawang panalo na lamang ang kailangan para sa kauna-unahang titulo ng koponan, ay road warriors sa buongbseason.

Tangan nila ang NBA’s best record sa road sa 24-12 sa regular season, kung saan tumapos sila sa 51-21 sa likod ng NBA overall leader Utah.

Sinundan ito ng Phoenix ng 6-2 road record sa playoffs at batid ng Suns na wala pang koponan ang nakahabol sa 3-0 deficit para manalo sa NBA playoff series.

“I love our home crowd, but I also love playing on the road. It has always been like that my whole career,” ani Suns guard Chris Paul.

“When you go on the road, it’s just you and your guys, the people that travel with you, so you really got to stick together.

“And it’s nice when you can silence a crowd. It’s fun. It’s entertaining. I think our team, we just had a right mindset for it.”

Ang pananatili sa road sa panahon ng COVID-19 pandemic ay nakatulong sa pagbuo ng pagkakaibigan sa Suns, lalo na nang umanib si Paul sa koponan noong nakaraang Nobyembre.

“We enjoy playing on the road and I think that brings our team together even more,” sabi ni Suns guard Devin Booker.

“We spent a lot of our free time this year, especially with the Covid protocols, spending time together. Not with our families on the road, just somebody hosting. We’re playing cards. We have 10, 12 guys in the room at a time.”

Being composed and prepared for a road game in the NBA Finals comes from a confidence built night after night during the campaign.

“We’re prepared for this moment,” wika ni Suns forward Jae Crowder. “All year we’ve been talking about trying to come together on the road and get our road presence in a sense.

“You just can’t turn it on right now in this moment. You have to prepare yourself for this and we’ve done a great job of talking and preparing ourselves for moments like we’re going to face the next few days.

“It’s the Finals. You expect a tough crowd, especially when you’re on the road, it’s playing for it all, so we’re prepared for it. We know we have to be together, do everything collectively and we’re aware of it, and I’m looking forward to the task.”

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