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Miami Heat Bracing For The Challenge Of Slowing Milwaukee Bucks Star Giannis Antetokounmpo

The Miami Heat have the tough task of defending Milwaukee Bucks MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra knows there is no blueprint to defending Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo.

When their Eastern Conference semifinals series begins Monday, the Heat aren't going to change much of their approach from the regular season. The Heat won two of three meetings during the season. Miami is in the second round of the postseason for the first time since 2016 when they lost to the Toronto Raptors. 

"When you're in the playoffs, you're going to have to do more prep," Spoelstra said. "But we're not reinventing the whole wheel on how we prepare for the game. You just get into your routine. Each opponent is going to present really different challenges. This is a good team and obviously an MVP player on their team. We're going to have to do things well."

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Antetokounmpo, who is the reigning MVP, is averaging 29.5 points, 13.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists this season. Heat center Bam Adebayo will likely draw the defensive assignment for most of the series. While Antetokounmpo is the focus, Spoelstra said slowing his teammates is perhaps more important.

"They generate a lot of three-point looks because you have a guy that collapses your defense consistently," Spoelstra said. You're playing a caliber team like this. The more you advance in the playoffs, you're going to have bigger challenges. You're going to have to do multiple things on every single possession. It's not going to be a one-effort possession."

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