Antetokounmpo does not believe in cargo management and goes for the Thunder


The Milwaukee Bucks intend to conclude a four-game road trip with a victory in Oklahoma City on Sunday, a difficult task considering that the Thunder has won five of the last six games at the Chesapeake Energy Arena.

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The Thunder, in fact, were one of two teams that swept the Bucks last season, although Giannis Antetokounmpo was a spectator for the final match, as Milwaukee chose to rest his stars before the playoffs.

Antetokounmpo will surely be on the court on Sunday, especially given his recent comments against the notion of "cargo management."

However, the most valuable NBA player was not on the court in the final moments of Friday's game, when the Bucks saw their four-game winning streak stopped with a 103-100 setback in Utah. Antetokounmpo had left due to accumulation of fouls after scoring 28 of his 30 points in the second half for Milwaukee, who could not overcome an early deficit of 22 points.

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"Obviously, we can't afford to be 22 behind in the first half, but at the end of the day, I think the team did a great job coming out in the second half fighting, playing together," Antetokounmpo told reporters after the game. "And, you know, when you're a good team, that's what you do. We could just give up and let the game reach 30 and be a beating, but that's not what we do.

"At the end of the day, I think out of this game, we improved. Although we lost this game, we improved."

Khris Middleton matched his peak of the season on Friday by scoring 26 points for the third time in 2019-20 and the second in his last three games. The 28-year-old also recorded season highs in triples (five) and rebounds (11) before seeing how the Bucks' onslaught fell short.

"It's hard," Middleton said. "The boys gave it their all. We didn't realize in two plays in the final stretch that cost us the game."

Oklahoma City earned its third consecutive home victory and third in four outings overall with a 114-108 victory over Golden State on Saturday.

The Thunder saw a 17-point lead at halftime before veteran guard Chris Paul said the team chose to simplify their game on the road to victory.

"Start playing, stop thinking," Paul told Fox Sports Oklahoma. "Just push the tempo, push the rhythm. Put them on the ball screens and just don't play so slow. I think at the beginning of the game I was walking a bit. Dennis (Schroder) and I talked about pushing the tempo, and that's what we did".

Schroder, who added 16 points and six assists from the bench against the Warriors, broke out with 32 points and eight triples in the Thunder's 127-116 victory over Milwaukee on April 10 last season.

Danilo Gallinari made four triples to highlight his 21-point performance against Golden State. The 31-year-old has found his touch from a long distance, sinking 9 of 12 attempts from beyond the goal in his last two games.

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