The Milwaukee Bucks, who are currently on a five-game win streak with their big three finally healthy, will take on the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night as part of their four-game homestand. The Bucks’ big three of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday have been a major factor in their recent success.
In the recent win against the Charlotte Hornets, Antetokounmpo had a standout performance with 34 points and 18 rebounds. Middleton added 18 points, and Holiday scored 15 while grabbing a career-high 13 boards. After the win, Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer emphasized the importance of Holiday’s contributions to the team, saying, “Jrue’s capable of doing so much, it was an emphasis that our guards needed to help getting rebounds. He’s good at playing around the basket. He does a ton for us.”
Despite a triple-double from Charlotte’s LaMelo Ball (27 points, 11 assists, and 10 rebounds), the Bucks were able to hold off the Hornets and secure the win. This was a significant bounce-back game for Milwaukee, as they had suffered a 138-109 loss to the Hornets earlier in January.
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The Clippers, meanwhile, are continuing their six-game Eastern Conference road trip after defeating the Bulls in Chicago on Tuesday night, 108-103. Kawhi Leonard led the way with 33 points, while Norman Powell contributed 27 points and Paul George chipped in 16 points while grabbing 10 rebounds. Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue praised the performance of Powell, saying, “Norman Powell did a great job off the bench. He’s an instant offense and has been for a while. It really got us going.” Despite being down 19 points in the second quarter, the Clippers were able to come back and secure the win.
While Antetokounmpo currently sits third in the league in scoring (31.8 points per game) and second in rebounds (12.2 per game), Holiday leads the Bucks with 7.2 assists and 1.4 steals per game. Brook Lopez leads the team in blocks with an average of 2.5 per game after his five-block performance against the Hornets. On the Clippers’ side, Paul George leads the team with 23.3 points, 5.4 assists, and 1.5 steals per game in 37 starts this season, while Ivica Zubac leads in rebounds (10.2 per game) and blocks (1.3 per game).
Unfortunately, the Bucks will be missing Bobby Portis, who sustained a knee injury last week, and former Clipper Serge Ibaka, who is out for personal reasons, as the team searches for a trade partner. The Clippers, in turn, will be without John Wall and Marcus Morris Sr., with Wall currently dealing with an abdomen injury and no timetable for return, and Morris dealing with a rib injury.
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In the past two seasons, the two-game season series between these teams has been split, with Thursday marking the first of two games this year. The all-time series between these teams is close, with the Bucks leading 69-54, and the second game between the teams is scheduled for February 10th in Los Angeles.
In conclusion, Thursday’s game between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Clippers promises to be an exciting match-up between two talented teams. With the Bucks’ big three fully healthy and the Clippers coming off a recent win, fans can expect a closely contested game with plenty of highlights. Despite missing key players on both sides, both teams will likely put up a strong fight as they look to extend their win streaks and gain a crucial win