Will Giannis Antetokounmpo & Chris Paul Play? Milwaukee Bucks vs Phoenix Suns Game 6: Prediction, Injuries, and Lineups

Published 07/18/2021, 9:29 PM EDT
Jul 11, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul (3) drives for the basket against Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) during the second quarter in game three of the 2021 NBA Finals at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports


The Milwaukee Bucks first added flavor to the NBA Finals 2021 by winning both their home games. Then, they won a live wire Game 5 to completely take over the dish and are now grilling the Suns from left, right, and center. A 3-2 lead for the Bucks heading to their home court was the least expected outcome but that is what it is.

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Game 6 might be a do-or-die game for the Suns, but the Bucks know that they must seal the series or it would be a nasty fight in Phoenix. However, after three consecutive wins and a replenished avatar of Jrue Holiday, the NBA title is up for grabs for Mike Budenholzer’s men.

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Milwaukee Bucks vs Phoenix Suns: Injury updates and lineup prediction

Unlike the NBA Finals from the past two years, this year has been better in terms of the stars keeping themselves fit. But there have been two additions to Milwaukee’s list. Donte DiVincenzo’s exit for his foot surgery, the Bucks had lost a starter. Now, Thanasis Antetokounmpo (Health & safety protocols) and Sam Merrill (ankle) are the two other players added to the injury list.

Potential starting lineup – PJ Tucker (F), Giannis Antetokounmpo (F), Brook Lopez (C), Khris Middleton (G), and Jrue Holiday (G) 

The Phoenix side will miss the services of power forward Dario Saric (Achilles tear). Notably, this name was more important to the Suns than the two latest additions on the injury list were to the Bucks.

Probable starting five – Mikal Bridges (F), Jae Crowder (F), DeAndre Ayton (C), Devin Booker (G), and Chris Paul (G)

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Jul 14, 2021; Devin Booker drives to the basket as Khris Middleton defends during the 2021 NBA Finals game at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Who wins?

If the last two games are anything to go by, Devin Booker is perhaps the most unfortunate piece. He became the first player to lose consecutive NBA Final games even after scoring 40+ points. Clearly, the youngster is receiving a poor help offensively from his teammates. 

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In Game 5, however, the Suns weren’t as bad. Their starting five went 42/73 from the field, making up for a 57.53% efficiency. In fact, they were neck-to-neck or even better than the Bucks in terms of shooting. But none of that mattered as they choked in clutch time, allowing the visitors to take the lead on important points.

For the Bucks, the refreshing point was the two-way dominance of Jrue Holiday. He was on fire and although his was not a contact-heavy game, he could still intimidate the Suns offensively. Now, with the Bucks trio performing seamlessly, it’s tough to imagine how they can lose Game 6.

However, we believe the Suns, who started Game 5 on an impressive note, will come up with a winning strategy and take a 2-point Game 6. Feel free to share your predictions below.

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Watch this story – Devin Booker’s Sensational Game 4 Performance and Other Notable Highlights

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Sourabh Singh

1396 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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