Giannis Antetokounmpo scores 27 points on 27th birthday to lead Bucks over Cavaliers

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo is fouled by Cavaliers guard Ricky Rubio during the second half of the Bucks' 112-104 win Monday night in Milwaukee. [Morry Gash/Associated Press]
Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo is fouled by Cavaliers guard Ricky Rubio during the second half of the Bucks' 112-104 win Monday night in Milwaukee. [Morry Gash/Associated Press]

MILWAUKEE — Giannis Antetokounmpo came back from a two-game absence and scored 27 points on his 27th birthday to help the Milwaukee Bucks defeat the Cavaliers 112-104 on Monday night.

The two-time Most Valuable Player also had 12 rebounds in his return from a sore right calf as the Bucks won for the 10th time in 11 games.

Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen dunks during the first half of a 112-104 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday night. [Morry Gash/Associated Press]
Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen dunks during the first half of a 112-104 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday night. [Morry Gash/Associated Press]

The Bucks broke a 29-29 tie with seven consecutive points early in the second quarter and stayed ahead the rest of the way, though the Cavs made the Bucks work for it.

After trailing by as many as 13, the Cavaliers got the margin down to two in the fourth quarter. Cedi Osman missed a 3-point attempt with 6:14 left that would have given the Cavs their first lead since late in the first quarter.

Jrue Holiday then made a 3-pointer on the other end to extend the Bucks’ lead to 101-96 with 6:04 remaining.

Cleveland Cavaliers' Ricky Rubio drives between Milwaukee Bucks' Wesley Matthews and Pat Connaughton during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 6, 2021, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Cleveland Cavaliers' Ricky Rubio drives between Milwaukee Bucks' Wesley Matthews and Pat Connaughton during the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 6, 2021, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

The Bucks' lead didn’t drop below five the rest of the way.

Holiday had 20 points, eight assists and seven rebounds. Khris Middleton provided 21 points and eight assists. Pat Connaughton scored 12, and Bobby Portis had 10 points and 16 rebounds.

The Bucks are undefeated this season when Antetokounmpo, Middleton and Holiday are all in the lineup.

Cavaliers guard Darius Garland shoots during the first half of Monday night's 112-104 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks. [Morry Gash/Associated Press]
Cavaliers guard Darius Garland shoots during the first half of Monday night's 112-104 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks. [Morry Gash/Associated Press]

Jarrett Allen led the Cavaliers with 25 points and nine rebounds and shot 10 of 12 from the floor. Lauri Markkanen scored 20, Kevin Love 15, Evan Mobley 12 and Darius Garland 10.

The Bucks have beaten the Cavaliers eight consecutive times. The Bucks are 43-4 against Central Division opponents since Mike Budenholzer took over as coach in 2018.

Tip-ins

Cavaliers: Garland entered the game having scored more than 30 points in each of his past two games, but he cooled off Monday and shot just 3 of 12. ... Allen was one rebound shy of his eighth consecutive double-double. ... The Cavaliers were playing one night after a 109-108 loss to the Utah jazz that snapped a four-game winning streak.

Bucks: Donte DiVincenzo was briefly assigned to the Wisconsin Herd, the Bucks’ NBA G League affiliate, to get some practice sessions as he works his way back from a torn left ankle ligament. DiVincenzo hasn’t played since injuring the ankle in a first-round playoff series against the Miami Heat last season. Budenholzer said DiVincenzo “continues to do well and probably exceed our expectations” but didn’t offer a timeline for the former Villanova star’s potential return. ... George Hill missed a second straight game due to hyperextension in his right knee

Bulls at Cavaliers

Time: 8 p.m. Wednesday

TV: Bally Sports Ohio

This article originally appeared on Akron Beacon Journal: Bucks stay hot, withstand Cavaliers' fourth-quarter rally

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting