The Milwaukee Bucks snuck away from the Little Caesars Arena with a 107-104 win over the Detroit Pistons on Monday night. It looked like the Bucks were en route to a big win over the Pistons as they maintained a double-digit lead, but who are we kidding? It’s never that easy with the Bucks, especially when you are playing against the referees as well.
Gettin’ Greek Freaky
Again, Giannis Antetokounmpo was phenomenal on Monday night. He dropped 32 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 blocked shots in 31 minutes. He made 15-of-21 shots from the field, and totally dominated in the paint. The Pistons simply had no answer for the Greek Freak. Even though Giannis shot the ball 21 times, he only shot 2 free throws. Yep, you read that right. 2 shots from the line in 21 shots taken against Detroit. Time and time again, it was blatantly obvious that he would get whacked on drives to the basket, but alas, there was no whistle. This has been a constant theme this season, and Antetokounmpo has impressively kept his cool even when the refs swallow their whistles. Could you imagine if Giannis went to the line as frequently as Joel Embiid did? Rant aside, Giannis mixed in a few fantastic defensive plays and was even coaching from the sidelines when he was not in the game.
D.J. WILSON SURVIVES!
If you would have told me that Wilson would be a HUGE reason as to why the Bucks escaped with a victory, I would have thought you are crazy. Well, here we are. D.J. Wilson winning games for the Milwaukee Bucks in 2018. He added 9 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and one blocked shot in 26 minutes of action. For all intents and purposes, his shot looked pretty solid last night. He confidently swooshed a 3-pointer off of a catch and shoot opportunity in the first quarter. It was pretty. Wilson was also very active defensively. We even got D.J. Wilson vs. Blake Griffin, and Wilson comfortably won that battle on the defensive end of the floor. However, he did have a lot of trouble guarding Jon Leuer on the low block. He fell for every shot fake. In a Bucks tenure that really hasn’t amounted to much, this was absolutely his best performance in a Bucks jersey. He also finished plus-2 and did not commit a single turnover. Let this be known as the D.J. Wilson game. I love basketball.
Blake Griffin, twice contested by DJ Wilson, misses a pair of 3's and the Bucks survive, 107-104.— Matt Velazquez (@Matt_Velazquez) December 18, 2018
K-Midd Comes Back
Khris Middleton is back, baby. He was a scoring machine against his former team, and you just knew a big game was in store for him on Monday night. He finished with 22 points, 2 rebounds, and 6 assists while making 7-of-16 shots overall. The Bucks looked to get him involved early and often, and it paid off as he hit the first two 3-pointers he attempted. He played 37 minutes and started to look like himself again, which was fantastic to see. As hot as he was, the Bucks went away from him on offense as the game went on which was a bit peculiar. In a month that’s seen him average 11.2 points per game while making 27.9% of his shots, this performance was much needed. He also finished a game-high plus-15. Welcome back, Khris Middleton.
- It was the full Eric Bledsoe experience last night. He put in 17 points, 3 rebounds, and 9 assists (no turnovers) but did shoot 2-of-5 from the charity stripe including bad misses down the stretch. He finished plus-8 against the Pistons.
- Sterling Brown wants all the smoke. He scored 9 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals in 26 minutes off the bench. He also threw one down on Blake Griffin, and also played some spectacular defense. He’s come up big for the Bucks the last few weeks.
- George Hill...yuck. He was 0-of-6 from the field and finished minus-11 in the Bucks victory on Monday. His Bucks tenure has gotten off to a horrible start.
- Tony Snell was great filling in for the injured Malcolm Brogdon (hamstring). Snell sank 5-of-8 shots to tally 12 points and 6 rebounds while playing 29 minutes. He’s been very aggressive and efficient offensively this season and has been putting the ball on the floor at a high frequency. Snell has been superb at picking his spots offensively this season.