Coming off a tough loss to the Jazz at home Sunday night, the Cavaliers went into Milwaukee to face the world champion Bucks.
Cleveland trailed Milwaukee by 10 entering the fourth quarter and would cut the lead to 98-96 with just over seven minutes to go. However, the Bucks would go on a 9-1 run to put the game away and win 112-104 at Fiserv Forum Monday night.
After winning four straight, the Cavaliers(13-12) have dropped two consecutive games, while the Bucks(16-9) have won two straight and 10 of 11.
Here is the Great, Not So Great, and Bottom Line of the Cavs’ loss to the Bucks.
The Great for the Cavaliers:
-Jarrett Allen’s double-double streak ended at seven games, but he had a very good performance Monday night. He led the way for Cleveland with 25 points(10/12 FG), nine rebounds and two blocks. Allen is getting it done and is second in the NBA in field goal percentage(71%).
-Lauri Markkanen had a solid performance. He scored 20 points, including four threes, and had seven rebounds.
-Kevin Love gave the Cavs great minutes off the bench. Love scored 15 points, including a game-high five threes in 19 minutes. The 13-year veteran has been in double figures in four out of the last five games.
The Not So Great for the Cavaliers:
After two straight 30-point games, Darius Garland struggled with his shot. He was 3/12 from the floor and finished with only 10 points. Garland did add nine assists. However, he led the team in turnovers(four).
-Isaac Okoro was 0/6 from the floor, including 0/3 from downtown. He had a team-worst -20 rating.
-Playing the second game of a back-to-back can be taxing, and the Cavs played like a tired team Monday. They shot 39% from the field and 15/46 from three-point range. At times, it appeared Cleveland fell too much in love with the three-point shot as they launched more threes than two-point shots.
Beating the Jazz(16-7) and Bucks(16-9) on back-to-back nights would be tough for any team in the NBA. To the Cavs’ credit, they were a Garland three away from beating the Jazz, and they competed and battled against the Bucks. However, they fell short, which is not the end of the world when you consider where the Cavs are right now.
“We’re going to fight till the end,” Allen said. “That’s the main thing I learned about this team, about the guys. No matter how we start the game, no matter who’s in front of us, big or small, we’re going to go out there and fight till the end.”
Cleveland returns home to play another tough team when they battle the Chicago Bulls Wednesday night.
Best of the Rest:
Giannis Antetokounmpo led the way for Milwaukee as he scored 15 of his game-high 27 points in the fourth and grabbed 12 rebounds on his 27th birthday. Khris Middleton had 21 points and eight assists, Jrue Holiday scored 20 points and dished out eight assists, and Bobby Portis had a double-double with 10 points and a game-high 16 rebounds.
-Evan Mobley had 12 points and six rebounds for Cleveland. However, Mobley’s streak of 13 games with a block was snapped against Milwaukee.
Watch below as Markkanen and Allen react to the loss against the Bucks: