Watching the Milwaukee Bucks systematically beat the Detroit Pistons four times this year made me feel for fellow fans in Motor City, but I am thankful for the Bucks bouncing back with a solid 115-105 win. Milwaukee made a late run in the first to gain a moderate lead, entering the second quarter up 30-22. In the second, their bench crew came to ball, slicing open a 62-49 advantage heading into halftime. Detroit made some inroads midway through the third, but the Bucks regained control to finish the period up 89-77. Milwaukee’s starters annoyingly had to play somewhat deep into the fourth, but they finished the Pistons off cleanly.
Giannis Antetokounmpo got back to his usual ways decimating an opponent in the paint and nearly mustering a triple double at 21 points, eight rebounds, 11 assists, three steals and two blocks. The ease with which he was able to score against Detroit’s front line versus Oklahoma City’s was staggering.
With Malcolm Brogdon out tonight, Tony Snell stepped into the starting lineup to round out a crew that all finished in double digits; Snell ended at 11 for the night. Khris Middleton and Eric Bledsoe both had efficient evenings from the floor too, with Bled at 20 points and seven assists while Midds managed 15 points and six assists. Pat Connaughton took advantage of the gap in wing depth tonight by tying his season high at 16 points.
Detroit’s big three did their best to keep them in the contest tonight, but they just paled in comparison to the depth that Milwaukee sported this evening. Reggie Jackson led all Pistons scorers with 25, with Blake Griffin adding 18 points, seven rebounds and nine assists plus Andre Drummond added 20 and 13 boards.
Stat that Stood Out
Milwaukee’s bench unit bounced back after three straight no-shows. With just 45 points in the last three games combined for the Bucks, their backups showed out tonight by tallying 34 points. The Bucks bench unit hasn’t needed to score much for the team, ranking 26th in the league at 31.3 points per game, but their steadiness has been noticeably absent the last few games. Their positive lift was on clear display tonight though. D.J. Wilson broke his scoreless streak in the last few games too, tallying nine points with a second quarter spurt.