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Preview: Milwaukee Begins Three-Game Road Trip, Looks to Extend Winning Streak to 10 in Atlanta

The Milwaukee Bucks (9-0) will look to extend their franchise-best season-opening winning streak to double digits in a matchup against the Atlanta Hawks (6-3) on Monday in Atlanta. The contest will be the second meeting between the two sides after Milwaukee defeated Atlanta 123-115 in Milwaukee on October 29th, a game that was much closer than the score line might suggest. Trae Young (42 points) and the Hawks were within 1 point of the Bucks until Jrue Holiday (34 points) hit a floater with 23 seconds left to give Milwaukee a three-point lead that proved to be too much for Atlanta to overcome.

While the Bucks have been elite defensively, boasting a league leading defensive rating of 100.6, the 115 points scored by the Hawks in Milwaukee were the most allowed by the Bucks through their first nine games. This time around, the Bucks will no longer be enjoying the luxury of playing at home as they embark on a three-game road trip that will eventually take them through Oklahoma City and San Antonio after their stop in Atlanta.

Specifically, Milwaukee will hope to do a better job of defending Atlanta's backcourt pair of Trae Young and Dejounte Murray on Monday. Although Antetokounmpo and Holiday stole the show during their first duel with Atlanta this season, scoring 34 points apiece, Young and Murray were not too bad themselves, putting up a Kobe -and-Kwame-Brown-esque combined 63 points on 24/51 (47%) shooting from the field and 8/15 (53%) shooting from beyond the arc. If Milwaukee wants to extend their streak in Atlanta, they will need to improve on the perimeter defensively.

Giannis and the Bucks head to Atlanta for their third road game of the season (via Bucks official website)

Injury wise, Bucks fans will hope Giannis Antetokounmpo, who has had an impeccable start to the season—even for his standards—will hope he plays after missing Saturday's game with a sore knee. As of Sunday, he is listed as probable to play in the contest. Sandro Mamukelashvili (concussion) is questionable while Pat Connaughton (calf) is out, Eric Nehm of The Athletic reports. It is unclear whether Khris Middleton will be available for the contest.

Milwaukee is -2.5 point favorites heading into what it is just their third away game of the season, although ESPN's "Matchup Predictor" tool gives Atlanta a 58.7% chance to hand Milwaukee its first loss of the season. Historically, the Bucks-Hawks matchup has been heavily influenced by location. While the Bucks are 72-39 (.649) all-time at home against the Hawks, they are a measly 41-75 (.353) when battling the Hawks in Atlanta, according to StatMuse. This will be the first time Giannis and Co. will face off against a team with a winning record away from home this season and could prove to be a challenge in their quest to prolong their record-breaking win streak.


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