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Shorthanded Bucks can’t get it done against Cavs

Injuries are starting to pile up on the Milwaukee Bucks.

Nikola Mirotic was added to the M*A*S*H list Wednesday, leaving the Milwaukee Bucks even more shorthanded.

The personnel shortage ended up costly, and the Bucks suffered a 107-102 loss to the lowly Cleveland Cavaliers at Quicken Loans Arena.

The Bucks learned Mirotic suffered a sprained left thumb and a fracture in Tuesday night’s victory over the Los Angeles Lakers. He joins Giannis Antetokounmpo (ankle), Malcolm Brogdon (foot), Pau Gasol (ankle), Sterling Brown (wrist), George Hill (groin) and Donte DiVincenzo (heel). With seven players out, the Bucks had to call Bonzie Colson up from the Wisconsin Herd, although he did not play. One of the eight players who did play was Tim Frazier, who signed Tuesday.

Khris Middleton did what he could, scoring 26 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. Eric Bledsoe added 24 points but went just 7 for 19 from the field. Brook Lopez chipped in 19 points.

Pat Connaughton added 11 points off the bench, but the other two reserves — D.J. Wilson and Frazier — combined to go 1 for 13.

In the end, the Bucks couldn’t contain Jordan Clarkson and Collin Sexton, and when they did, they gave up too many (13) offensive rebounds.

Sexton went for 25 points, and Clarkson posted 23 off the bench. And for a three-minute stretch in the fourth quarter, Ante Zizic looked unstoppable in the first seven minutes of the fourth quarter. Scoreless with three rebounds through three quarters, Zizic recorded eight points and seven rebounds (five on the offensive end) and two blocked shots in the fourth quarter.

Zizic’s tip-in gave the Cavs a 91-86 lead with 6:46 left. From there, Clarkson and Sexton combined for 14 of the Cavs’ last 16 points.

The inability to finish wasted a strong third-quarter effort for the Bucks, who overcame a 16-point second-quarter deficit and a 58=47 halftime disadvantage to tie it at 81 entering the fourth.

But the Cavs scored the first four points of the fourth period, and the Bucks never got back to even again,

The Bucks (53-19) take a day off and then host the Miami Heat. They’re hoping to get Antetokounmpo back and possibly Brown and Hill.

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