The Bucks started the season off 9-0 and their 16 game win streak just ended. In between, they were 20-17, just over .500 in nearly half a season's worth of games. Middleton is back and playing more, but he's not playing well (not remotely resembling the guy who made the all-star team 3 times in the last 4 years). An easy comparison for Celtics fans would be 2019 Gordon Hayward, still a long way away from fully recovering despite occasional flashes. Giannis is having his least efficient season statistically since before he started winning MVPs. They just ripped off a massive winning streak and it feels like their main rival has been just treading water for months, but they wake up today just half a game ahead Boston.
The Bucks are in good shape, but no one is as good as they look at their best, and the Bucks aren't the juggernaut that just went 5+ weeks without a loss.