The Brooklyn Nets were seeking revenge against the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday after losing to them on Sunday. Steve Nash pointed out that this matchup was going to have a “playoff vibe” coming in and it played out exactly that way to start. The teams went back and forth and the Bucks were fortunate to have Giannis Antetokounmpo go off again. Despite picking up three early fouls, he scored 21 points in the first half and went 3-5 from downtown.
Kevin Durant had the answer for the Nets as he went for 17 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 blocks on 6-9 shooting at the half. Kyrie Irving joined in on the party and had a better start in this chapter of the season series. Irving had 14 points, 5 assists, and 3 rebounds after the first two periods. Brooklyn still trailed 58-66, but we were in store for yet another thriller in the second half.
Rightfully so, Brooklyn captured a lead heading into the fourth quarter after outscoring Milwaukee 36-26 in the third period. This was all thanks to Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant who had a combined 61 points. Unlucky for them though, the last period for the Nets didn’t go according to plan. Khris Middleton (23 PTS, 7 REBS) caught fire and Giannis Antetokounmpo (36 PTS, 12 REBS) closed out as they dominated the Nets in fourth quarter 32-24.
Kyrie Irving finished with 38 points and 5 assists while Kevin Durant added 32 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists in the loss. This duo had a chance with under two minutes left when Bruce Brown caught an offensive rebound and kicked it out to Durant on an open three to make it a one possession game, but he missed it and they couldn’t find a better opportunity after.
Kyrie Irving responds after a bad game on Sunday
Kyrie Irving exploded for nearly 40 points, scoring 38 versus the Bucks. He did it efficiently too on 14-25 shooting. In the the postgame press conference on Sunday, Irving stressed that he wanted to be out there to «complement» Kevin Durant when he erupted for 42 points in the loss, but he was having a bad game with 20 points on 8-21 shooting. For his standards of course, this was bad, and here he responded against Milwaukee in this last matchup with a 38-point game.
Nicolas Claxton is back
Nicolas Claxton has not played in an NBA game since April 18th. The Nets big man checked in during the first half of this game to log 5 minutes. In his short time on the court, he was able to grab 2 rebounds and force a couple of stops. Claxton is an important piece for Brooklyn moving forward and his minutes were limited because Steve Nash wants to slowly ramp up his activity. He does not want to rush into things. Although perhaps Nicolas Claxton could have impacted this game more in the second half if he checked in, Nash did not decide to find out.
Landry Shamet goes cold
Landry Shamet went 1-8 from the field and 1-6 from behind the arc. He did this all in 23 minutes of action. There was lid on the hoop for Shamet all night and it hurt Brooklyn on the offensive end because they were just waiting and waiting for him to get it going, but he just couldn’t. This game showed shades of how most of his games were at the start of the season, but as of late he has avoided these type of cold shooting nights. Well, until now. It was a great run though, but he the former Shocker can still bounce back. It’s been while since he had this type of night.