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Rapid Recap: Bucks 120, Clippers 127

NBA: Los Angeles Clippers at Milwaukee Bucks Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, the Milwaukee Bucks dropped a winnable home game to a playoff team in the Los Angeles Clippers, 127-120. Milwaukee dug itself into a deep hole early, falling behind 38-24 after just one quarter. The Bucks won the second quarter, finishing plus-7 in the period, but still trailing the Clippers at halftime 64-57. Unfortunately, that also signaled the end of the night for Giannis Antetokounmpo, who was replaced by Jabari Parker for the duration of the game due to Giannis’ right ankle sprain. Surprisingly, that didn’t portend great things for this Bucks team, as the fourth quarter commenced with them down 97-83. Milwaukee posted a furious comeback in the last few minutes, but they couldn’t get themselves over the hump and the Clippers came out ahead tonight.

Losing your star and still making a game out of it against a playoff contender is worth some consideration, but LA’s pedigree combined with the home game should’ve made tonight a winnable contest for the Bucks. Unfortunately, the idea of a “winnable contest” seems continually elusive this season for Milwaukee, and their series of depressing losses after the All-Star Break continue to make this season seem like the longest toilet bowl flush in history.

Giannis Antetokounmpo was held out of the second half after suffering a right ankle sprain, but he ended the night with 12 points, two rebounds, two assists and three blocks. His health is by far the most important takeaway from tonight’s tilt. Here’s what matters:

Jabari Parker’s extended minutes off the bench meant additional scoring opportunities, ending with a productive 20 points, six rebounds and three assists. Khris Middleton tried to pick up some slack as well, finishing the night with 23 points, four rebounds, six assists and four steals. Eric Bledsoe had 19 points and eight assists on 7-15 shooting.

For LA, the evergreen sized DeAndre Jordan did his usual destruction to the Bucks, tallying an absurd 25 points and 22 rebounds. For support, he received plenty of scoring across the board including 22 points from Austin Rivers and 19 from Lou Williams.

Stat that Stood Out

37 Points off Turnovers - LA had 21 turnovers on the night, giving Milwaukee plenty of chances to run in transition and get simple scores before Jordan could prop himself up near the bucket. Somehow, the Bucks were still unable to outscore the Clippers despite a +21 advantage in this respect, with their porous defense failing them once again as Jordan turned the paint into his own property.