You couldn’t expect a ton on a night without Giannis Antetokounmpo, but that doesn’t make the Milwaukee Bucks 113-106 loss to the Washington Wizards any less of a buzzkill on this Friday night. It wasn’t a pretty sight after the first quarter, with the Washington Wizards hanging a cool 40 on the Bucks who mustered only 26 points. The second quarter wasn’t any more appealing, with the Bucks defense holding the wizards to only 17 points, but Milwaukee scored just 21 of their own as they trailed 57-47 at half. Malcolm Brogdon and Brook Lopez were the only two in double digits (13 and 10 respectively). Through the third, Milwaukee’s triples finally started falling as the Bucks trailed only 82-85 when the final quarter opened. Unfortunately, the Bucks couldn’t get the stops they needed to pull this one out down the stretch.
There isn’t much to take away from a game without Giannis, but this was an opportunity for Milwaukee’s second and third fiddles to show they could carry the Bucks over a lackluster opponent and allow their bellwether a chance to rest. Instead, they let a team in relative turmoil come away with a win. I’m not mad, I’m just disappointed.
With Giannis out, Khris Middleton picked up some of the slack with a still quiet 25 points and eight rebound evening. Eric Bledsoe asserted himself in the second half, sometimes a bit too much as he went just 7-21 from the field, but he did muster a near triple-double with 18 points, nine assists, eight rebounds and three steals. Malcolm Brogdon added 15, but only snagged two points in the second half.
For Washington, Bradley Beal was the likely leader, gashing through the Bucks for 32 points and seven assists. His fellow starters did plenty to help him out too, with Jeff Green and Trevor Ariza combining for 40 points. Tomas Satoransky rounded it out with his first career triple-double at 18 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists.
Stat that Stood Out
The Wizards shot freaking 54.5% from deep, going 18-33 from beyond the arc. How can it be anything else. It’s by far their best shooting game from three of the season, their previous best being a 48.1% night in their win over Philly on Wednesday. It’s tied for their franchise’s third best percentage ever from deep in a game in which they attempted 30 or more 3-pointers. The Bucks have given up some radical shooting nights to teams this year, but this ranks right up there as the most frustrating.