Bucks gore Sixers

By Christopher Owuor
Friday, March 19th, 2021
Giannis Antetokounmpo #34 of the Milwaukee Bucks shoots the ball against the Philadelphia 76ers on March 17, 2021 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Photo/AFP
In summary

Los Angeles, Thursday

Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 10 of his 32 points in overtime to power the Milwaukee Bucks to a 109-105 victory over Philadelphia in an NBA Eastern Conference heavyweight clash Wednesday.

Reigning two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Antetokounmpo, ably defended by Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons, struggled early, scoring just four points in the first half as the East-leading 76ers built a 45-31 lead.

Philadelphia, again without injured star Joel Embiid, led by as many as 19.

But Milwaukee seized a 78-76 lead with 8:18 remaining in regulation.

From there it was a back-and-forth battle until Antetokounmpo scored 10 straight Bucks points in overtime, a run that included a left-handed drive past Simmons and a step-back jump shot over Dwight Howard that put the Bucks up 105-98 with 1:11 left in the extra period.

“We didn’t stop playing, we played great defense. We trusted one another, we didn’t put our head down, we kept our composure.

We believed in ourselves, and that’s why we were able to come back in the game,” said Antetokounmpo, who added 15 rebounds and five assists, his run of three straight triple-doubles coming to an end.

Tobias Harris led Philadelphia with 19 points and Danny Green added 18 for the Sixers.

Simmons had a triple-double of 13 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists, but the 76ers saw their six-game winning streak end and lost Seth Curry in the fourth quarter with a sprained ankle.

They finished the night tied atop the East with the Brooklyn Nets, who were propelled by James Harden’s 40-point triple-double in a 124-115 victory over the Indiana Pacers.

Nets All-Star Kyrie Irving sat out with a sore groin as the Nets continued to await the return of star Kevin Durant from a hamstring strain.

Former NBA MVP Harden filled the void, making 13 of 27 shots from the field and 12 of 14 free throws.

His putback layup knotted the score at 96-92 early in the fourth quarter and ignited a 13-4 Nets scoring run.   - AFP