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Bucks avenge recent rout by Mavericks with win
Friday, December 08, 2017
Final Score: DALLAS 102, MILWAUKEE 109
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MILWAUKEE -- Khris Middleton scored 31 points, Giannis Antetokounmpo finished with 27 and Eric Bledsoe added 24 as the Milwaukee Bucks fought off the Dallas Mavericks for a 109-102 victory Friday night at the Bradley Center.

Middleton made five 3-pointers -- including two in the fourth quarter -- while the Bucks' big three combined to make 24 of 54 shots from the floor.

Wes Matthews led Dallas with 29 points and had five of Dallas' 10 3-pointers, but the Mavericks had no answer for Middleton or Bledsoe as the duo combined for 27 points in the fourth quarter.

Two weeks after handing Milwaukee a 32-point embarrassment in Dallas, the Mavericks got off to a quick start again and stretched the lead to 10 early in the second quarter, forcing Bucks coach Jason Kidd to call timeout and regroup. Milwaukee was just 10 of 29 at that point, though Antetokounmpo had already scored 10 points. He finished the half with 17, but Milwaukee shot just 37.5 percent as a team and only made two of 11 3-point attempts while the Mavericks got 15 from Wes Matthews and shot 48.7 percent to go into the locker room with a 54-49 lead.

Milwaukee used a 12-0 run in the final minutes of the third to take a 77-76 lead when Middleton sank a 3-pointer with 40 seconds left in the quarter.

Nowitzki put Dallas back in front with two free throws and the Mavericks opened the fourth leading 78-77.

Again, the Bucks rallied. Bledsoe scored six points in a 7-0 run, capped with a 3-pointer from the corner that put Milwaukee up six with 6:55 left.

A pair of 3-pointers from Matthews helped Dallas tie it at 95, and the Mavericks kept it close until Middleton converted a four-point play with 3:03 to go.

Middleton came up big again a minute later with an open 8-footer. He and Bledsoe each hit two free throws in the final 20 seconds to close it out.

NOTES: Dallas PG Dennis Smith Jr. was unavailable because of a strained left hip suffered when he fell into a camera operator earlier this week in a game against Boston. Coach Rick Carlisle said Smith would likely miss the next game on Sunday at Minnesota. ... Milwaukee was already playing short-handed because of injuries to Matthew Dellavedova (left knee tendinitis), Mirza Teletovic (knee surgery) and Jason Terry (strained calf) but had to also go without G Tony Snell, who sat with tendinitis in his left knee. G Gary Payton II started in Snell's place. ... After missing the Bucks' last nine games, Dellavedova was listed as questionable but did not see action against the Mavs.

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