The Milwaukee Bucks were up by 17 points in the third quarter. You could taste it. A 3-2 lead in the series and a chance to close it out at home Thursday night.
Then it all slipped away. Kevin Durant turned in a Jordan-like performance. With Kyrie Irving out and James Harden hobbled and a shell of himself, Durant turned in a legendary performance for the ages. A triple-double of 49 points, 17 rebounds and 10 assists.
Durant played all 48 minutes and scored 20 points in the fourth quarter. The Brooklyn Nets won 114-108 to take a 3-2 lead in the series.
Questions can be asked. Why didn't Giannis guard Kevin Durant? Or the Bucks send more double teams at him? Why did the offense get stagnant again? Why, for all of his excellence (34 points and 12 rebounds), couldn't Giannis handle that pass late?
The Bucks can't agonize over this one for long. There aren't many must-wins in professional sports, but Thursday night qualifies. If the Bucks don't win Game 6 and force a seventh game in Saturday, the season will be over.
The Game 5 loss was hard to handle. It's up to the Bucks to make sure it wasn't a fatal blow to the season.