NBA: Giannis powers Bucks past Celtics


Posted at Aug 01 2020 09:32 AM | Updated as of Aug 01 2020 09:48 AM

(UPDATED) Giannis Antetokounmpo delivered in the clutch, as the Milwaukee Bucks came away with a 119-112 triumph over the Boston Celtics in their first game of the NBA restart, Friday at the Walt Disney World Complex in Orlando (Saturday, Manila time).

Antetokounmpo, the reigning NBA Most Valuable Player, finished with 36 points, 15 rebounds, and seven assists in their victory.

He broke the last deadlock of the game when he soared to the rim for a lay-up over Marcus Smart that made it 109-107 for the Bucks with 1:28 to play.

Referees had to review the sequence before calling a foul on Smart as opposed to a charge on Antetokounmpo, which would have been the Greek forward's sixth of the game.

Instead, he was awarded with a free throw, giving the Bucks a three-point lead. After Jaylen Brown missed a triple in the Celtics' next trip down the floor, Khris Middleton nailed a three-pointer for a 113-107 Milwaukee advantage with just 63 seconds left.

The Celtics still had a chance after Brown completed a three-point play with under a minute left, 113-110, but Antekounmpo slammed the door on their hopes of a comeback with an and-1 of his own.

His clutch bucket and free throw gave the Bucks a 116-110 advantage with 37.6 seconds to go.

Middleton added 18 points and eight assists, while Brook Lopez had 14 points and six blocks for the Bucks.

Smart led the Celtics with 23 points off the bench, and Brown had 22 points. Jayson Tatum struggled mightily for Boston, making just two of his 18 field goals for five points.

The Bucks next play the Houston Rockets on Tuesday, while the Celtics will try to bounce back against the Portland Trail Blazers.

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