A showdown between the Central Division’s two top teams had all the accoutrements to be a mid-week classic. Instead, the Bucks turned the ball over again, and again, and again, and again, and again 17 more times on their way to a sloppy, if unexpectedly entertaining, 106-114 defeat.
Things looked promising to start for Milwaukee. Giannis kept up his dominant routine from Monday’s victory over New Orleans and drew four fouls on Cavs defenders in the first four minutes. Then the offense... stopped. Giannis scored 4 points in the final 5:40 of play and nobody did much else as Cleveland jumped to a 20-35 lead. The start of the second was more of the comedic first, although a cool stretch from the Cavs let the Bucks scrap back into a single digit deficit — before Cleveland hit a pair of threes to close the half and go into the break up 42-60.
Giannis had 21 points in the half, and the next best Buck was Grayson Allen with 6.
There was a little more offensive help for Giannis in the third quarter with some MarJon Beauchamp threes, one from Brook Lopez, Joe Ingles, and Jrue Holiday, but just as the offense came to life, the defense stalled out again with Donovan Mitchell slicing the Bucks up for 15 points out of his total 36 from the game. Bucks still down 77-93. Milwaukee looked like it might make things interesting late with Giannis on a one man mission scoring and creating almost every bucket, but Cleveland just kept making every floater and midrange jumper they took on the way to a Milwaukee loss. Giannis finished with 45 points and 14 rebounds.
Stat That Stood Out
3 - Joe Ingles finally made his first bucket as a Buck and contributed three points to Milwaukee’s efforts. He also wedgie’d a wide-open corner three in what would’ve cut Cleveland’s lead to three with under 30 seconds left. Them’s the breaks!