The Bucks traveled to Boston on Thursday night to take on the Celtics. Unfortunately, Milwaukee suffered its first loss of the season, 117-113. The Boston fans were rocking, fresh off a Red Sox World Series win. Chants of, “YANKEES SUCK,” erupted throughout the stadium. After being out the previous game in concussion protocol, Giannis Antetokounmpo came into this game ready to rock. The Celtics are many people’s picks to win the Eastern Conference and this was Milwaukee’s first meeting with them since they lost in last year’s postseason. Thursday night’s game was full of exciting action and Giannis showed out on National TV.
Antetokounmpo’s First Half
The Milwaukee star’s first bucket of the game was an incredible spin move into a ferocious right-handed slam. “That was scary,” is all TNT color commentator, Grant Hill, had to say. Besides the one dunk Giannis was very quiet in the first quarter scoring 2 points and hauling in 2 rebounds. The Bucks team fed off Giannis and struggled, as a team they scored 16 points and only shot 31.8% in the opening quarter. Antetokounmpo and his “go go gadget go” arms helped Milwaukee erase their early deficit by scoring 10 points in the first 5 minutes of the second quarter. By the end of the first half Giannis had 14 points, 5 rebounds, and 1 assist as Milwaukee trailed, 55-53.
Antetokounmpo’s Second Half
Giannis started off the third quarter by knocking down ½ free throws. However, the Celtics answered with 4 straight three-pointers (3 by Boston guard, Kyrie Irving) and they never slowed down. The Celtics outscored the Bucks by 13 in the third, while Giannis was a non-factor. After three quarters he had 19 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 assists. The Bucks started the fourth on an 8-0 run behind Antetokounmpo’s solid play. He played within himself and set the pace for Milwaukee. At one point Grant Hill stated, “it’s not fair,” for teams to have to guard the Bucks forward. Milwaukee found themselves only down by 2 points with 26 seconds left in the game. Then, on a fastbreak Giannis badly missed a reverse layup that would have tied the game. On the very next possession, Milwaukee forced a steal and a foul that put Bucks guard, Eric Bledsoe on the line. He only made 1 free throw and put the Bucks down 1 with 12.8 seconds left. Boston inbounded the ball to Kyrie Irving and fouled him with 12.3 seconds left in the game. He knocked down both free throws and Milwaukee found themselves down 3. After a Bucks timeout, they passed the ball to Giannis and he was put on the line. Disappointingly, he missed one and the Celtics were able to ride out the conclusion of the game. Antetokounmpo did all he could but he could not hit the big shots at the end. His final stat line read 33 points (13-22 from the field), 11 rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 steals. This was his third, 30 points and 10 rebound game of the season.
Milwaukee’s next game is at the Fiserv Forum against the Sacramento Kings at 2:30 p.m. (CT). Last season Giannis played 2 games against the Kings and averaged 32.5 points per game, 9.0 rebounds, and 5.0 assists. Watch out for a monster game from the all-star on Sunday.
*All stats according to espn.com*
*Featured Image via Brian Babineau, Getty Images*