Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Damian Lillard sparkles as Bucks maintain off Nets

Damian Lillard sparkles as Bucks maintain off Nets

Milwaukee Bucks’ Damian Lillard and Brook Lopez rejoice through the first half of an NBA basketball recreation Thursday, March 21, 2024, in Milwaukee. (AP Photograph/Morry Gash)

MILWAUKEE— Damian Lillard had his third straight recreation with at the very least 30 factors. He made his two largest performs on the opposite finish of the ground.

Lillard had 30 factors and 12 assists and made two late steals because the Milwaukee Bucks capitalized on Giannis Antetokounmpo’s return to beat the Brooklyn Nets 115-108 within the NBA on Thursday evening.

The primary of these two steals led to the profitable basket after the Nets overcame a 20-point deficit to take the lead.

READ: NBA: Celtics maintain on to frustrate Bucks with out Giannis Antetokounmpo

“I feel in my profession, I haven’t been referred to as a defender, however down the stretch of video games, I’ve at all times been in a position to have a second or do what I wanted to do on the finish of the sport defensively,” mentioned Lillard, who has averaged 31 factors and 11.3 assists over his final three video games.

Antetokounmpo had 21 factors, 9 rebounds and 5 assists after lacking two video games due to a problem along with his left hamstring.

Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo  NBA

Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo reacts after making a shot and being fouled through the second half of an NBA basketball recreation towards the Brooklyn Nets Thursday, March 21, 2024, in Milwaukee. The Bucks gained 115-108. (AP Photograph/Morry Gash)

“You attempt to management what you’ll be able to management,” Antetokounmpo mentioned. “Issues like this are going to pop up at times. Type of sudden, however on the finish of the day, these are the playing cards you’ve been dealt, and also you simply must carry on figuring it out, carry on taking part in by means of ache, taking part in by means of adversity.”

The Bucks rested Khris Middleton an evening after he performed 33 minutes in a 122-119 loss at Boston, as they proceed to handle his workload in his restoration from a sprained left ankle.

READ: NBA: Damian Lillard, Bucks escape shorthanded Clippers

Mikal Bridges scored 24 factors, Nic Claxton had 22 and Cam Thomas 21 for the Nets, who misplaced their fifth straight.

After trailing by 20 factors late within the second quarter and 18 early within the third, the Nets pulled forward by outscoring the Bucks 21-6 over the primary 5 1/2 minutes of the ultimate interval.

“We didn’t get a win, however I actually imagine that we grew tonight,” Nets interim coach Kevin Ollie mentioned. ”That’s the message I’ve been telling them since I took over. I simply need them to develop.”

Cam Johnson made a 3-pointer with 6:58 left to place Brooklyn forward 87-88, giving the Nets their first lead since 11-9. Dennis Smith Jr. adopted with a steal and a basket to make 90-87 with 6:41 remaining.

Antetokounpmo made a 3-pointer to tie it with six minutes left, and the sport went backwards and forwards from there.

It was tied at 96 when Lillard received a steal and began a quick break. The sequence resulted in Antetokounmpo scoring on the opposite finish of the ground whereas getting fouled. Antetokounmpo hit the following free throw to finish a 3-point play with 3:36 remaining.

Milwaukee prolonged the result in 5 on two events, however the Nets minimize it to 103-101 on Bridges’ 3-pointer with 2:17 left.

After Antetokounmpo missed a shot, the Nets had the ball with an opportunity to tie or take the lead. Dennis Smith Jr. drove into the lane, however Lillard stole the ball, headed upcourt and located Malik Beasley open for a nook 3-pointer that made it 106-101 with 1:37 remaining.

Lillard then sealed the victory by scoring the sport’s subsequent 5 factors, together with a 3-pointer with 41 seconds left.

“Dame defensively was phenomenal tonight, all recreation,” Bucks coach Doc Rivers mentioned. “He’s a really aggressive man, and you might see that tonight.”

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Nets: At New York on Saturday.

Bucks: Host Oklahoma Metropolis on Sunday evening.

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