With the best record in the NBA for a large portion of the season, the Milwaukee Bucks are no longer sneaking up on anyone. You don’t need to when you’re capable of dominating.
And dominating is just what the Bucks are doing right now.
Their 113-94 victory over the Brooklyn Nets Monday night capped a week of domination, and it gets even more impressive when you realize it was all on the road.
The victory gave the Bucks a four-game winning streak to finish their five-game road trip. In the four victories, the Bucks lead by as many as 21 at Detroit, 24 at Toronto, 32 at Washington and 25 Monday night at Brooklyn. Every final margin was double digits.
Giannis Antetokounmpo led the way with 30 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists, missing his triple-double because he retired to the bench with 4:24 left because the game was well in hand. Earlier Monday Antetokounmpo was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week for the second straight week and sixth time this season.
Malcolm Brogdon posted 16 points, Eric Bledsoe chipped in 15 and Khris Middleton a modest 12 as the Bucks won the first three quarters with a dominating defense. Through the first 36 minutes, the Bucks held the Nets to 27% shooting (20 for 74), including a polar-vortex-like 3 for 32 (9.3%) from behind the arc. The Nets improved those numbers to 33 for 102 (32.4%) and 5 of 42 (11.9%) a slightly better performance in a mostly garbage-time fourth period. Shabazz Napier missed all 10 3-pointers he attempted.
The Bucks weren’t great offensively. They didn’t have to be. They shot 42.2% (43 for 102) and went just 10 for 39 (25.8%) behind the arc.
D’Angelo Russell led the banged-up Nets (28-27) with 18 points but went just 7 for 20 to do it.
Improving to 39-13, the Bucks have won seven of their last eight on the road and 10 of their last 11 and 17 of their last 20 overall. During that 17-3 span, 15 of the victories have been by double figures. The other two were by nine and seven.
The Bucks padded their Eastern Conference lead to two full games over second-place Toronto. They lead the Indiana Pacers by six games in the Central Division as they are looking for their first division title in 18 years.
They return home for a Wednesday night game against the Washington Wizards