Another familiar foe visited Fiserv Forum Wednesday night. The Atlanta Hawks went to Milwaukee to face the Bucks in Khris Middleton’s first game back from his leg contusion injury. The home team didn’t disappoint and extended their win streak to nine games, the franchise’s longest win streak since ten games in the 1985-86 season. Led by Giannis’ 17th straight double-double, the Bucks came out on top 111-102.
The Hawks have one of the worst defenses in the NBA. On the other side, Milwaukee has a top-five offense and defense. Logic says the Bucks take this one easy and it looked like it was going to go that way for a majority of the first half. Milwaukee’s lead got as high as 17 points but a random revenge half from Jabari Parker brought Atlanta back within one at the break. Parker scored 25 points in the first half alone, just two points below his previous season-high, and finished with 33 points.
The second half stayed close most of the way with the Hawks even taking a brief hold of the lead. Trae Young was most of Atlanta’s offense in the second half and finished with his own 29 points. However, the Bucks are a tested team built for a close game and Giannis is the perfect player to ride to victory. The Greek Freek took over in the closing minutes to secure another double-double with 30/10/4/4 blocks and the W.
By no means was this a pretty win for Milwaukee. They shot under 30% from deep and just 63% from the free strike, most of those misses coming from Giannis. But nevertheless, a win is a win in the NBA and the Bucks continue their hot streak.
Besides Giannis, the scoring was relatively even. Six others scored at least nine points and all eleven players who saw the floor had at least one made field goal. Khris Middleton had 16 points in 20 minutes in his return. He got most of his minutes with the second unit and scored at a decent clip despite missing a number of looks a fully healthy Kha$h makes.
The Bucks, along with the rest of the NBA, will have Thanksgiving Day off. They return to the hardwood Friday in Cleveland to take on the Cavaliers. Tip is set for 6:30 p.m.