• Bucks, not Celtics, making leap to contender

    By: Butch Stearns

    Updated:

    BOSTON - One of the two basketball teams at TD Garden on Friday night was supposed to take that leap to the top of the Eastern Conference this year. 

    Well, 31 games into this season, it's not the Boston Celtics who are leaping.  It's the 22-9 Milwaukee Bucks

    Led by their MVP candidate Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Bucks came into Boston and took it to the Celtics, beating them 120-107.

    The Celtics jumped out to a 10-1 lead, but the Bucks quickly woke up and went on a 20-4 run to take a 21-14 lead. 

    Milwaukee led 35-22 after one and 65-48 at the half.  

    The Bucks were led in the first half by Khris Middelton who had 17 at the break and finished with 21 fpr tje ga,e. The Bucks hit 10 three pointers in the first half and shot 50 percent.

    The Celtics started to get on track in the third quarter, led by Jaylen Brown, who led the Celtics with 21 off the bench and had a signature dunk over Antetokounmpo, and then flexed his muscles, staring the Bucks star down.

    But, it was Antetokounmpo and the Bucks who had the last laugh finishing the game strong.  Giannis led all scorers with 30 points and he added 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 blocks. 

    The Bucks out-shot the Celtics 51.3 % to 38.5%.  The Celtics had a frustrating shooting night led by Gordon Hayward (3-13, 11 points), Kyrie Irving (7-20, 15 points) and Jayson Tatum (5-15, 20 points)

    Celtics next game is 6 p.m. Sunday at TD Garden when they host the Charlotte Hornets.

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