Wed, Jan 31, 2018 - Page 16 News List

Bucks extend win streak to four

MISSING CENTER:The 76ers were overpowered without Joel Embiid, and Giannis Antetokounmpo took the chance to post his 22nd double-double of the season

AP, MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin

Amir Johnson of the Philadelphia 76ers, left, defends against Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks in their NBA game in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on Monday.

Photo: AP

What a difference a week makes for the Milwaukee Bucks.

They won their fourth straight game since coach Jason Kidd was fired by beating the Philadelphia 76ers 107-95 on Monday and they are getting forward Jabari Parker back in a few days.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 31 points and 18 rebounds, while Matthew Dellavedova scored all 10 of his points in the fourth quarter for the Bucks, who moved to 27-22 and look like contenders again in the Eastern Conference.

“Anytime you go 4-0 in a week, it’s a good week,” said center John Henson, who had 13 points. “Just playing well. We beat the teams we’re supposed to beat.”

The 76ers did not have All-Star center Joel Embiid, who sat out to rest.

Milwaukee has also beaten losing teams in Phoenix, Brooklyn and Chicago under new coach Joe Prunty, the assistant who took over on an interim basis after Kidd was fired on Monday last week.

Still, this is progress for a squad that at times has played down to the level of their opponents.

“We’re just playing harder, trusting one another,” Antetokounmpo said. “Just in general having fun when we’ve been out there.”

Dario Saric had 19 points to lead the cold-shooting Sixers, who were two of 26 from three-point range a night after going 11 of 29 in a loss at Oklahoma City.

Ben Simmons added 16 points.

“Maybe we left them in Oklahoma,” Saric said about the off night from the arc.

He missed all eight of his three-point attempts.

The Sixers started out having all the fun in the paint, scoring 22 of their first 26 points in the lane, but the Bucks, who focused on making life difficult for Philadelphia on the perimeter, started figuring out how to limit the Sixers down low, too.

Philadelphia were overpowered without Embiid in the middle and Antetokounmpo picked up his 22nd double-double of the season.

“Without Joel, we knew that if we were going to win, we needed a successful three-point night,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said. “We had to find points from somewhere.”

Milwaukee also announced during the game that Parker was cleared to return on Friday against the New York Knicks, nearly a year after being sidelined with the second major left-knee injury of his career.

Parker tore his left anterior cruciate ligament on Feb. 8 last year against Miami. At the time, he was averaging a career-high 20.1 points and 6.2 rebounds as one of the franchise’s cornerstones.

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