Antetokounmpo, Bledsoe lead Bucks past Nuggets, 104-98
MILWAUKEE — Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 29 points and Eric Bledsoe added 22, including two late 3-pointers, as the Milwaukee Bucks overcame a 17-point, first-half deficit to down the Denver Nuggets 104-98 on Monday night.
Antetokounmpo added 12 rebounds for Milwaukee, which came from 22 down in the first half to beat the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.
The Bucks swept the two-game season series against the Nuggets for the first time since 2009-10.
Jamal Murray had 17 points, eight rebounds and nine assists for Denver, which has lost six of its last seven games. Nikola Jokic had 20 points and Malik Beasley chipped in with 12 points off the bench.
The Bucks led 78-77 heading to fourth quarter. The teams exchanged leads until Milwaukee went on a late 8-0 run that featured a pair of 3-pointers by Bledsoe. Denver pulled within two points with less than a minute left on Jokic’s 3 but Khris Middleton, who had been 0 for 7 from deep, answered with a 3-pointer to put the Bucks up 103-98 with 27 seconds left.
After trailing by 10 to start the third quarter, the Bucks grabbed the lead late in the period on a slam dunk by Antetokounmpo.
Denver used a 17-4 to start the second quarter to build a 17-point lead and held a 56-46 advantage at the half. Milwaukee closed the half on a 10-3 run, capped by Brook Lopez’s 3-pointer.
The Nuggets led 29-25 after the first quarter, sparked by nine points from Gary Harris.
Nuggets: Shot 6 of 21 from 3-point range in the first half. .With 11 first-half points, Murray was the lone Denver player to reach double figures, although all nine players who saw action scored. … Coach Michael Malone was whistled for a technical foul in the third quarter after arguing an offensive foul call on Juancho Hernangomez.
Bucks: Lopez had seven first-quarter rebounds. He entered the game averaging 3.3 rebounds. .Antetokounmpo and Middleton combined to shoot 1 for 14 from 3-point range.
Nuggets: Visits Minnesota on Wednesday.
Bucks: Host Portland on Wednesday.