One of the National Basketball Association’s rising stars in the making resides out of the city of Milwaukee in Giannis Antetokounmpo. The ‘Greek Freak’ has made a case to be in the conversation for the league’s most valuable player award and Saturday evening was another example of why Antetokounmpo is one of the NBA’s best.
The 6-foot-11 forward scored a game-high 32 points and notched five rebounds and five assists in leading Milwaukee to a 111-104 victory over Orlando at the Amway Center. The Magic were coming off a 3-game win streak, which included solid wins against the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat. Orlando (18-37) will hit the road and face the Chicago Bulls at the United Center tomorrow night.
”We were right there the whole game,” said Orlando Magic point guard D.J. Augustin. ”I felt like we could have pulled away at the end, but Jason Terry came in and hit some big shots, like he’s been doing his whole career.”
Another problem Milwaukee posed was its bench play and combo guard Jason Terry came in and had a throwback night. Terry scored 11 key points, including knocking down three 3-pointers for the Bucks. The Magic were not able to counter the Bucks’, even though Orlando got solid contributions from its bench, including Shelvin Mack’s 19 points.
One of the hero’s from the Magic’s big win over the Cavaliers earlier in the week in Jonathan Simmons, was totally neutralized and the small forward was held to just nine points on 4-of-14 shooting. Antetokounmpo was a big reason for Simmons’ drop off in the scoring department, as the big man also registered two blocks and a steal.
”I’m not sure a lot of teams have a guy like Giannis,” Milwaukee coach Joe Prunty said. ”You can go up and down the stat sheet and you know it’s going to be filled.“
Mario Hezonja and Evan Fournier paced Orlando with 23 and 20 points, respectively.