The Milwaukee Bucks demolished the Golden State Warriors 134-111 in the deafening Oracle Arena. Although the Warriors were without Draymond Green (and Stephen Curry left the game in the third quarter), that still does not take anything away from the Bucks’ near-perfect performance against the 2-time defending NBA champions. Here are three Bucks who stood out in their statement victory.
Eric Bledsoe has bought in defensively.
After holding Damian Lillard to a season-low 23 points on Tuesday, he put the clamps on Warriors point guard Stephen Curry. The sharp-shooting point guard finished with 10 points on 5-14 shooting and Eric Bledsoe was in his jersey all night. Bledsoe was making life incredibly difficult for Curry, and he also got him into early foul trouble with his aggressiveness offensively. In what could be his best performance in a Bucks jersey to date, Eric Bledsoe finished with 26 points, 4 rebounds, and 6 assists while shooting a robust 10-of-12 from the floor. He also knocked down 2-of-3 tries from deep. Not only was he efficient, but he was hustling all night. Bledsoe was constantly fighting for loose balls and attacking the offensive glass. Gotta love seeing that from him. Bledsoe finished plus-30 last night in his pristine performance.
It’s Pat Connaughton’s world, we’re just living in it.
Connaughton came off the bench for the Milwaukee Bucks and provided them with an instant spark on both ends of the floor in the second quarter. He played a huge part in the Bucks stretching their lead going into halftime. He was very active defensively and also showed tremendous basketball IQ with some impressive backdoor cuts for easy baskets. “Planet Pat” finished with 15 points on 7-of-11 shooting in 21 minutes of play and even dunked between two defenders tonight. Look, here’s proof! You got to love the Bucks’ bench reacting to the slam.
Giannis Antetokounmpo roasted whomever the Warriors threw at him defensively.
The Greek Freak finished with 24 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and 2 blocks in 26 minutes of action. Giannis also converted 10-of-11 free throws, and the referees were rewarding him when he attacked the basket which is a nice change. Even though he “only” made 7-of-16 shots, Antetokounmpo was making everything look relatively easy last night against the defense of the Golden State Warriors. He was also very offended that the Warriors tried to guard him with Kevon Looney.
Bonus Bucks Bits
- Khris Middleton chipped in 17 points and 6 assists while also playing really solid defense on Kevin Durant, which is no easy feat. He only shot 6-of-16 from the floor, but he also finished a team-high plus-33. The Bucks are a way better team when he’s on the floor. Period.
- Malcolm Brogdon had an excellent game after putting up a dud against the Blazers on Tuesday night. Brogdon scored 20 points on 9-of-14 shooting in 25 minutes of play and he was in attack mode all night. He found a lot of success putting the ball on the deck and driving to the basket where he completed a multitude of finishes around the rim. This is what we love to see from the President.
- The Milwaukee Bucks shot 27 free throws compared to 22 for the Warriors. The Milwaukee Bucks were the more aggressive team from the onset, and the refs rewarded them for it. Often times, it’s Milwaukee’s opponents who get the favorable whistle. Last night, it was definitely the Bucks. I for one, am not complaining. It’s about time.
- The Bucks outscored the Golden State Warriors 84-34 in the paint... That seems pretty decent.
- The Milwaukee Bucks hit only 9-of-35 three-pointers (25.7%) and still put up 134 points. Who said you need to hit threes to win?!
- John Henson! Yes, Henson actually gave the Bucks some really solid minutes off the bench last night. He finished with only 4 points, 3 rebounds, and one block but he was very active defensively and on the offensive glass.