Milwaukee Bucks star guard Jrue Holiday has finally accomplished his childhood dream of going to the NBA Finals. On Saturday night in Atlanta, the Bucks beat the Atlanta Hawks 118-107 to win Game 6 of their Eastern Conference Finals and close out the series.
Holiday, who was traded from the New Orleans Pelicans to the Bucks last offseason, has made the NBA Finals in his first year with the Bucks. In Game 6, Holiday was near a triple-double as he scored 27 points, dished out nine assists and grabbed nine rebounds.
"It feels awesome," Holiday said. "I'm still kind of on this high, but I'm going to the Finals. It's cool to think as a little kid, this is what you watch the playoffs for. This is all the moments that I felt as a little kid watching TV.
I lived them and went through them and now I get to go to the Finals and see what this is about."
A great journey for Holiday and the rest of the team
Bucks' Middleton scored a game-high 32 points and had seven assists in a Game 6 win over the Hawks.
"It's been a long journey," Middleton said. "But it's been a great journey. It's been worth it. After winning 15 games in our first year here and seven years not making the playoffs, to the last two years thinking we had a chance and just didn't do enough and now we're here.
This is what we've worked for." Meanwhile, Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer said: "What a roller coaster of emotions, especially this series. Just impressed with the resilience of the group, the character of the group."
Holiday had some kind words to say of Middleton. "He's the type of player that, again, he puts the weight on his shoulders and doesn't care," Holiday said of Middleton after the game. "Khris is the heart of this team.
I feel like Giannis is the soul of this team, and without them, man, we really wouldn't be here." Bucks top star Giannis Antetokounmpo missed the last two games of the series. "There's a bittersweetness to him not being able to play these last two games," Budenholzer said.
"Khris and Giannis are the key to this team, to this organization. To have the opportunity to coach them and come here three years ago and try to build something special, those two guys are special, and it starts with them."