|Giannis Antetokounmpo, SF 35 MIN | 11-16 FG | 5-6 FT | 15 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 27 PTS | -9 +/-
In the fourth quarter, Jim Paschke dubbed this Giannis’ best game as a pro and he was absolutely right. After setting a career high with 25 points against the Lakers on Wednesday, Giannis followed up with 27 points to go with 15 rebounds. He had his usual complement of dunks and inside baskets, but what was most impressive was his ability to knock down jumpshots. While he did not attempt a three-pointer, he connected on some deep twos, which helped to keep the Rockets defenders honest. Giannis was also active in the post, taking advantage of mismatches and finishing with more strength than usual. Over his last two games, Giannis has 52 points on 21-of-30 shooting. Not too shabby.
|John Henson, C 21 MIN | 6-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 12 PTS | -5 +/-
Henson finished well, for the most part, and made some impressive interior passes, but he was a virtual non-factor on the glass, pulling down only two rebounds. Houston had only 10 offensive rebounds as a team, but Henson seemed to be responsible for several of them, particularly when battling with smaller, but more physical players like Joey Dorsey and Josh Smith.
|Brandon Knight, PG 36 MIN | 5-14 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 11 AST | 5 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 12 PTS | -3 +/-
Knight hit some tough shots and had his jumper working for a brief period in the second half, but for the most part he struggled against the tenacious Patrick Beverley. He only committed three turnovers, but two of them led directly to Houston baskets, including one near the end of the second quarter that resulted in a wide open Trevor Ariza three. On a more positive note, Knight reached double-digit assists for the first time since opening night in Charlotte when he finished with 13.
|Jared Dudley, SG 25 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | -12 +/-
Dudley was mostly a non-factor in 25 minutes. His four field goal attempts were his lowest since the Bucks’ last loss on Jan. 25 in San Antonio.
|Khris Middleton, SG 27 MIN | 4-11 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 10 PTS | -2 +/-
Houston did a good job of keying on Middleton for most of the night, limiting to only 10 points after back-to-back 20-plus-point efforts. Middleton failed to make a three-pointer for just the second time since Dec. 31.
|Johnny O’Bryant III, PF 11 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -1 +/-
I haven’t been kind to JOB this season, but his effort was impressive again Friday. He only came down with three rebounds, but he was active on the glass on both ends and his one basket came after he battled for a rebound, dribbled out and drilled a baseline jumper.
|Ersan Ilyasova, PF 16 MIN | 3-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | 0 +/-
Ilyasova never truly looked comfortable and had a difficult time creating his own shot. Defensively, he struggled to keep the more athletic Houston wings in front of him, but it’s likely he’s still not at 100 percent after missing the previous four games.
|Jorge Gutierrez, PG 16 MIN | 5-5 FG | 3-3 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | +6 +/-
Gutierrez had easily his best game as a Buck to date, making all five of his field goal attempts, including a Wolters-esque floater in the second quarter. He was part of the reason Milwaukee was able to stay in the game in the second half, as he buried a jumper and converted a layup-plus-the-foul on back-to-back possessions. Interestingly, Jason Kidd played Gutierrez and Knight together for a stretch in the second quarter, allowing Knight to work off the ball.
|Jerryd Bayless, PG 20 MIN | 6-10 FG | 1-4 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | 0 +/-
After back-to-back rough shooting nights, Bayless got back on track and scored in double-figures for the fifth time in seven games. His biggest contribution came midway through the fourth, when he absorbed a foul on the way to the basket and flipped a layup high off the glass to bring the Bucks within seven.
|O.J. Mayo, SG 32 MIN | 5-13 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 11 PTS | -4 +/-
Wednesday’s hero took a lot of difficult shots and, not surprisingly, struggled from the field. He still managed to reach double-digits for the fifth time in six games, however, and extend his streak of making at least one three-pointer to eight games.
Three Things We Saw
- Giannis had a fierce chasedown block on James Harden in the fourth quarter.
- The Bucks went cold from beyond the arc, connecting on only 4-of-17 three-point attempts. Houston, by contrast, hit 15 threes, four of which came via Josh Smith. Josh. Smith.
- Entering Friday, Bayless is still the NBA’s leader in free throw percentage, but he’s been surprisingly average since snapping his streak of 58 straight makes. He was just 1-of-4 at the line Friday and is 10-of-16 over his last six games.