Photo Credit: AP Photo / Morry Gash
The Toronto Raptors beat the Milwaukee Bucks 110-96 for their second win in a row in Wisconsin, and extended the Bucks’ losing streak to five games.
Toronto carried over their momentum from their last meeting with Milwaukee, frustrating the league’s best offence yet again, limiting them to only 41 points in the first half. The Raptors complimented their impressive first half defence with efficient shooting on the other end of the floor, hitting 50 per cent of their field goals and going 9 for 18 from deep. Norman Powell led his team’s hot start with 17 points, hitting three shots from beyond the arc after two quarters.
Powell ended the night with 29 points on 9 of 12 shooting. Pascal Siakam’s strong stat line of 27 points, six rebounds and five assists kept the Bucks’ defence honest, even forcing them to double team him on certain possessions down the stretch.
Milwaukee’s starting five all ended the game with double-digit points, led by Giannis’ 23. He also pitched in 12 rebounds and eight assists, sparking the Bucks’ comeback attempt in the second half. While Milwaukee clicked better on offence in the second half, the Raptors successfully kept a good margin between them down the stretch to see out the game.
Coach Nick Nurse’s decision to go small, replacing the injured Kyle Lowry with guard DeAndre’ Bembry, paid off once again, as Toronto’s quick passing and movement on offence exposed the Bucks’s perimeter defending. The Raptors’ smaller defenders kept Milwaukee in check on the perimeter and forced turnovers, leading to missed shots in the paint from the reigning back-to-back MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Kyle Lowry missed tonight’s contest with a sprained left thumb. Toronto recalled rookie Malachi Flynn from Raptors 905 in the Orlando G-League bubble after he logged 33 minutes in a matinee game. He made it to the Fiserv Forum in time to suit up for the Raptors and appear for over four minutes off the bench.
The Raptors will travel to Minnesota to face the Timberwolves tomorrow night at 9:00PM EST.