The Boston Celtics will have to try and start a new win streak as the NBA playoffs near.
The Celtics had their 6-game win streak snapped Tuesday night in Milwaukee, as the Bucks outlasted Boston for a 106-102 win at BMO Harris Bradley Center.
As he’s been for most teams all season, Giannis Antetokounmpo simply was too much of a problem for the C’s. The Greek Freak notched a game-high 29 points to go along with 11 rebounds and six assists to help the Bucks pick up a home win.
Jaylen Brown carried the offensive load for Boston with a team-high 24 points and was one of five Celtics players to score in double figures. Boston made things interesting down the stretch, but Milwaukee didn’t allow for any late-game heroics from its opponent this time around.
With the loss, the Celtics drop to 53-24, while the Bucks improve to 42-36.
Here’s how it all went down:
PG: Kadeem Allen
SG: Jaylen Brown
SF: Jayson Tatum
PF: Al Horford
C: Aron Baynes
POINT GUARD INJURIES
Terry Rozier was out of action for the Celtics on Tuesday, missing his first game of the season with an ankle injury. Shane Larkin also missed the matchup against the Bucks with illness.
The Celtics held a 31-26 lead after one quarter of play, but both teams had a high level of success from the floor early on in the contest. In fact, the Bucks (68.6 percent) held the advantage in shooting percentage over the Celtics (57.9 percent) in the opening frame. Brown and Tatum paced the C’s with eight points apiece, while Khris Middleton notched a game-high 10 first-quarter points after knocking down all four of his shots. Boston also was careful with the basketball early on, committing one turnover to Milwaukee’s five.
Boston’s starters collectively were quiet in the second quarter, but luckily for the C’s, their reserves kept it close as the Bucks took a 58-56 lead into the break. After being limited to two points apiece in the first, Marcus Morris and Greg Monroe responded with much louder second frames scoring eight and six points, respectively. The duo combined to score more than half of Boston’s second-quarter points.
Boston led for the majority of the first half, but a sluggish third quarter plagued the C’s against the surging Bucks. Boston only managed to score 15 points in the frame, allowing Milwaukee to take a 79-71 lead into the fourth. It was a particularly troubling showing on offense for the Celtics, as they only converted on six of their 23 third-quarter shots.
DOWN TO THE WIRE
Despite Antetokounmpo taking over the fourth with 10 points, the Celtics stayed well within striking distance throughout the quarter. Boston cut the lead to four on a Horford three-pointer with just over two minutes remaining and got as close as three with 22 seconds left via a Tatum dunk. Tatum had a chance to bring Boston within two on the ensuing possession, but the rookie forward stepped out of bounds before hoisting a 3-point shot, paving the way for the Bucks to ice the game.
PLAY OF THE GAME
Tatum made this buzzer-beating shot look easy.
The Celtics play their second game of a back-to-back Wednesday night in Toronto against the Raptors. Tip-off from Air Canada Centre is set for 8 p.m. ET.