Thursday night was an interesting night to be a Wisconsin sports fans. Thankfully, the Milwaukee Brewers had an off day, as I only had two screens and they were filled with Game Six between the Bucks and the Toronto Raptors, and Round One of the NFL Draft.

First things first, I kept the Draft on the side screen, and it went about as expected. The Bears do something dumb, and Ted gets great value for the Packers by trading down. Ho hum.

95% of my attention last night was on the Milwaukee Bucks, and their attempt to stave off elimination and force a Game Seven on Saturday against the Toronto Raptors. After a quick start buoyed entirely by Giannis Antentokounmpo, it was clear that it wasn’t going to be the Bucks’ night. Toronto took a four-point lead following the first quarter, and then Milwaukee came out and stunk up the joint with a 14-point second quarter, allowing a tight game to stretch to a double-digit Raptors lead at halftime.

The lead ballooned to 25 points at 71-46, but the Bucks went on a remarkable 34-7 to improbably take a 80-78 lead on a Jason Terry 3-pointer with 3:06 left. Giannis was incredible, scoring 34 points to go with nine rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks. He did his darndest to bring Milwaukee back, but after mounting the summit and taking the lead after the comeback, the footing gave out, and the Raptors responded with a game-clinching 9-0 run.

To be honest, it’s ok. The way that Game 6 played out might be the best for their future. The Bucks were never going to win the NBA title this season, much less the next series against the Cleveland Cavaliers. I wanted so bad for Milwaukee to have this playoff experience and learn what they need to do to take the next step. I think that these six games were infinitely more valuable than being able to draft six positions higher because they opted to tank when Jabari Parker went down.

What we saw in this playoff series, is a true glimpse of what Giannis can be. He can be transcendent. He can dominate games. But to win a series, he needs help. The flu bug picked a bad time to strike Khris Middleton, leaving Jason Kidd to rely on a combined 50 minutes from Matthew Dellevadova and Jason Terry. They had their moments, especially Terry late, but it’s hard not to wonder what a healthy Bucks team would look like.

So where do the core members of this Bucks team go from here? For Giannis, it’s to the gym to hone a jump shot, which if becomes reliable, watch out, NBA. For Khris, it’s continue to get stronger and fully back from injury and learn ways to play off the ball more. For Malcolm Brogdon, it is to find a way to take a spectacular rookie campaign and find a way to grow. For Thon Maker, it’s EAT – put on some weight, get stronger, and continue to work on that outside shot. For Tony Snell, it’s accept your role as a spot up shooter in a pace-and-space offense. For Greg Monroe, it’s deciding whether or not you want to be a part of this rising team and accept your role off the bench, or seek more money elsewhere. For the others, it’s about honing your role.

A second ACL tear for Jabari was crushing, but it provided an opportunity for Antetokounmpo to elevate into near-superstardom. If Jabari can come back at any point next season, it’s a plus, but expectations need to be limited. He has all the potential of an All-Star that could average 25 and 12, but two major knee injuries leave you hoping that he can be a 14 and 7 contributor with flashes of more.

This is Giannis’ team. The Bucks know that, the Raptors know that, and the league is becoming well aware of that fact, too. Milwaukee will go as high as he can take them, but he certainly could use a little help along the way.