3 Teams that should especially want to avoid Knicks in first round of playoffs

The Knicks will be a nightmare matchup.

New York Knicks, Jalen Brunson
New York Knicks, Jalen Brunson / Kirk Irwin/GettyImages
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2. Milwaukee Bucks

The Bucks are the No. 2 team in the East, but it doesn't feel like they are. Milwaukee made a blockbuster trade for Damian Lillard over the summer, but it hasn't given the desired results. Well, at least not yet.

First-year head coach Adrian Griffin was fired after 43 games in which Milwaukee posted a 30-13 record. Even with a top record, the Bucks weren't meeting expectations, and frustration was mounting.

Doc Rivers took Griffin's place, and Milwaukee's defense has improved. The Bucks still have a ways to go, though. Time isn't on their side. Khris Middleton's return will help, as he's been out since Feb. 6 with an ankle sprain. He said it's the worst sprain he's had.

Of course, it helps that Milwaukee has Giannis Antetokounmpo. As long as he calls Wisconsin his NBA home, the Bucks will be contenders. He missed a couple of games last year in Miami's first-round upset over Milwaukee, which undoubtedly impacted the series.

It would be killer if the Bucks were first-round exits in back-to-back seasons. You can't waste a player of Antetokounmpo's caliber like that. If Milwaukee stays in the No. 2 spot and New York falls to No. 7, the Bucks' nightmare could come to life.