Giannis Antetokounmpo notched his second triple-double of the season as the Milwaukee Bucks defeated the visiting New Orleans Pelicans, 136-113, on Saturday night, January 1 (Sunday, January 2, Manila time) to extend their win streak to six games.
The five-time All-Star finished with 35 points on 12-of-18 shooting to go along with 16 rebounds and 10 assists. Antetokounmpo is now averaging 33 points since returning from health and safety protocols.
Reserve Jordan Nwora added 23 points, Jrue Holiday chipped in 21, and Grayson Allen stepped up with 16 in Khris Middleton’s absence.
Milwaukee continued to shoot the ball efficiently, shooting over 45% from the field for the fifth consecutive game while sinking 23-of its-48 shots from beyond the arc.
Jaxson Hayes led the Pelicans off the bench with a career-high 23 points. Josh Hart flirted with a triple-double, totaling 14 points, 11 rebounds, and 9 assists.
Herbert Jones followed up his career-high 26-point performance with 14 points, and Garrett Temple and Devonte’ Graham both collected 14 as well.
Despite getting outscored in all four quarters, the Pelicans had seven players score in double figures. Head coach Willie Green’s squad shot 41.1% from the field, their lowest percentage since December 3.
New Orleans trailed by at least 10 for the final 21 minutes of play. Milwaukee opened things up in the third quarter, jumping out to an 18-point lead that stemmed from a 21-9 run. Allen had 8 points during the surge, 6 of which came on shots from distance.
The Bucks held a 64-56 lead at the break after closing the first half on a 7-0 run. Milwaukee hit 10 first-half three-pointers as a team and Antetokounmpo had 17 points.
Hayes kept the Pelicans close with 13 points of his own, but New Orleans converted just 8-of-16 free throws to put itself at an early disadvantage.
Defense was a common theme through the first 12 minutes of action, as the teams combined to go 17-for-45 (37.8%) from the field with each team tallying four steals and a pair of blocks. – Rappler.com