NBA regular season

No Giannis, no problem: Bucks finish season sweep of Pistons


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No Giannis, no problem: Bucks finish season sweep of Pistons

ALL-AROUND. Milwaukee Bucks guard Grayson Allen (12) dribbles on Detroit Pistons guard Killian Hayes (7) in the second half at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

The Milwaukee Bucks lean on a balanced effort against the lowly Detroit Pistons with at least 4 scoring 20-plus as Giannis Antetokounmpo sits out

Khris Middleton poured in 34 points and the visiting Milwaukee Bucks continued their dominance over the Detroit Pistons with a 126-117 win on Monday night (Tuesday, March 28, Manila time).

Milwaukee (54-21) has won 17 of the last 18 meetings against its Central Division rival and swept the four-game season series. Detroit (16-59) has lost its last six games and 17 of its last 18 outings.

Brook Lopez had 24 points and 14 rebounds, while Jevon Carter supplied 22 points for the Bucks. Bobby Portis added 21 points and grabbed 14 rebounds.

Jaden Ivey led the Pistons with 32 points, eight rebounds and eight assists. Jalen Duren had 18 points and 10 rebounds, while Marvin Bagley III added 16 points and nine rebounds. James Wiseman and Killian Hayes chipped in 14 points apiece.

Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo missed the game with right knee soreness. Jrue Holiday took the night off due to personal reasons. The Pistons were once again missing numerous regulars due to a variety of injuries.

Milwaukee used a 14-3 second-quarter run to open up a 15-point lead but Detroit closed the half with an 11-2 run to cut its deficit to 57-51.

Middleton led four Bucks players in double figures with 17 points, while Ivey topped the Pistons with 11 first-half points.

Milwaukee continued to hold a single-digit advantage most of the third quarter. Isaiah Livers knocked down a 3-pointer to cut the Pistons’ deficit to five, 74-69. Bagley’s 3-pointer cut it to one, 78-77, with 5:12 left in the period.

Lopez had six points in the last four minutes of the quarter but Duren scored two inside baskets in the final minute and Detroit trailed just 94-90 entering the fourth.

Carter nailed a 3-pointer with 9:30 left to give the Bucks a 102-95 lead. Lopez’s layup less than a minute later nudged the advantage to double digits, 106-95.

Another Carter 3-pointer pushed the lead to 14 and forced Detroit to call timeout. The Pistons got it down into single digits again on two Ivey free throws with 3:29 remaining.

A three-point play by Middleton pushed the lead to 12 with 1:32 left. –

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