Wednesday, March 22, 2023
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NBA Preview: Milwaukee Bucks (45-18) at Washington Wizards (30-33)

The Milwaukee Bucks’ 16-game winning streak ended after six weeks without a loss.

When Milwaukee plays the Washington Wizards on Sunday, it will try to avoid its first run of losses since the second week of January.

When the Milwaukee Bucks, who have the best record in the NBA, led by as many as 18 points against the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday, it appeared as though they would extend their impressive streak to 17.

However, Philadelphia scored 48 points in the fourth quarter and rallied to win 133-130 over Milwaukee. In the final period, the 76ers missed 17 of 19 free throws and shot 7 of 11 from 3-point range.

The defensive collapse surprised Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer.

In the closing minutes, the Bucks were also hurt by the Philadelphia bench: The reserves of the 76ers won 20-0.

The Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 34 points and pulled down 13 rebounds. Holiday had 26 points, Brook Lopez had 26, and Grayson Allen had 20.

On Jan. 3, Milwaukee defeated the Wizards 123-113 at home, and Antetokounmpo scored a career-high 55 points. He didn’t play two days earlier, when Washington won 118-95.

In their last 13 meetings with the Bucks, the Wizards have lost 11 of those games.

On Saturday, Washington fell to the Toronto Raptors 116-109 in overtime, splitting a two-game home set. On Thursday, the Wizards defeated the Raptors 119-108.

Beal missed a 13-foot floater just before the end of regulation, which would have given Washington a chance to win the game on Saturday.

Beal made just 7 of 22 field goal attempts despite scoring 21 points in his 26th game this season. Additionally, he had a season-high ten assists.

This was Kristaps Porzingis’ 18th double-double of the season, resulting in 22 points and 11 rebounds. Porzingis has scored at least 20 points in 36 games.

In the defeat, the Wizards were hurt by 24 turnovers. Kyle Kuzma and Beal each committed five.

After being irritated by the sloppiness of his team, Washington coach Wes Unseld Jr. sang a similar song.

With a season-high 18 points, seven assists, six rebounds, and a match for his career high of six steals, Delon Wright played a strong all-around game.

Goran Dragic, a veteran guard, was signed by Milwaukee on Saturday and is expected to be ready to play on Sunday. In 15 seasons with six teams, Dragic has an average of 13.3 points and 4.7 assists.

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