Eric Christian Smith/Associated Press
The Milwaukee Bucks and Golden State Warriors earned valuable days off after clinching their respective conference semifinal series in five and six games.
The top-seeded Bucks await the winner of Sunday’s Game 7 between the Toronto Raptors and Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Golden State’s Western Conference Finals opponent will be the victor of Game 7 between Denver and Portland, which is the first of two series-deciding games Sunday.
The Warriors have three days off before Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals Tuesday, while the Bucks start the Eastern Conference Finals Wednesday after six days off.
Dates and TV Info for NBA Conference Finals
John Dickinson @JDJohnDickinson
Western Conference Finals Schedule:
1 — Tues. 5/14 at GSW (6p)
2 — Thur. 5/16 at GSW (6p)
3 — Sat. 5/18 at POR/DEN (6p)
4 — Mon. 5/20 at POR/DEN (6p)
5 — Wed. 5/22 at GSW (6p)*
6 — Fri. 5/24 at POR/DEN (6p)*
7 — Sun. 5/26 at GSW (6p)*
* If necessary
All games televised on ESPN
Golden State Trying to Get Healthy
Between now and the first tip of the Western Conference Finals, the focus will be on Golden State’s injured duo.
Marc Stein of the New York Times reported Cousins is on course to return to the active roster if he maintains the progress he has made working back from a torn quad.
According to ESPN.com’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Durant suffered a mild right calf strain and will be re-evaluated next week.
The good news for the Warriors is they will not have to rush Cousins or Durant back on to the floor if they keep playing like they did in Game 6.
Easing both stars back into the lineup is the ideal strategy, and if they prove they are able to perform on the court, they could be key contributors in the NBA Finals.
Brogdon Working Back to 100 Percent
Milwaukee is dealing with its own injury woes with the Eastern Conference Finals on the horizon.
Malcolm Brogdon has been working his way back to 100 percent, but he is not guaranteed of a starting spot when Wednesday rolls around.
Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer told reporters that Brogdon needs more game action to recover from a minor plantar fascia tear, per ESPN.com’s Malika Andrews.
“He needs more game minutes, more game action,” Budenholzer said. “We plan to continue to increase Malcolm’s workload and minutes. To say exactly how it’s going to play out—the next step will be him playing a little bit more in Game 1.”
Brogdon does not have to be rushed into the starting five for Game 1 because the Bucks have received plenty of impressive performances from other role players.
Nikola Mirotic, who has started in place of Brogdon, George Hill, Ersan Ilyasova and Pat Connaughton all reached double digits in the series-clinching Game 5 win over Boston.
If the supporting cast behind Giannis Antetokounmpo continues to thrive, the Bucks will be in great shape to advance to the NBA Finals.
Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.
Statistics obtained from NBA.com.