The Rundown: Giannis on fire as Bucks overpower Kings

Published March 14, 2023, 3:00 PMJon Carlos Rodriguez

Giannis Antetokounmpo recorded 46 points and 12 rebounds as the Milwaukee Bucks beat the Sacramento Kings.


Pistons 117, Pacers 97

Timberwolves 136, Hawks 115

Heat 119, Jazz 115

Grizzlies 104, Mavericks 88

Rockets 111, Celtics 108

Warriors 123, Suns 112

Bucks 133, Kings 124

What went down

Two teams with deep playoff aspirations went at it and showed why they’re two of the hottest teams in the league right now.

On one end, a dominant team in the East that hasn’t lost a back-to-back game since early January. That’s the Milwaukee Bucks, a team that has quietly demolished the competition to climb up to the league’s best record.

On the other, a surprising team in the West that hasn’t lost since late February. That’s the Sacramento Kings, a team with the league’s best offense.

Against each other, they both put out their best selves. The Bucks were led by Giannis Antetokounmpo, who feasted on the Kings’ poor defense. He scored 46 points, only missing 9 of his 28 attempts. He got help from Khris Middleton’s 31-point game and Brook Lopez’s 23-point contribution, which is really what you’d need to beat a team like Sacramento.

For the Kings, De’Aaron Fox showed up with 35 points, finding ways to get a bucket despite the tough Bucks’ defense. Domantas Sabonis was unstoppable everywhere, dropping a 23-17-15 triple-double.

The Kings led by as many as 15 points in the first half, but the Bucks held steady and took over with a three-point lead entering the fourth quarter.

As the clock winded down, so did the Kings’ energy. The Bucks outscored them 24-11 in a run that showed why Milwaukee is such a dangerous team this season. With Middleton back to provide an extra layer of boost for Antetokounmpo, teams like the Kings will have to find another way to beat them—and not just try to outshoot them on offense. 

Big-time ballers

James Wiseman delivered a big game versus the Pacers, dropping a double-double in the Pistons’ home win. Wiseman’s 18 points and 14 rebounds helped power Detroit to a 20-point win.  

The Rockets surprisingly beat a healthy Celtics despite Jaylen Brown’s 43 points. To do that, they had to use the combined 52 points of Jalen Green and Jabari Smith Jr.

Klay Thompson really likes playing against the Suns. In a shootout with Devin Booker, Thompson prevailed with 38 points on eight 3s.

Thompson was hot from the start, already hitting the 33-point mark in the first half.

What he said 

Steph Curry had some choice words for Chris Paul after a foul and a bucket: 

Did you see that?

Anthony Edwards scored 32 points in the big win versus the Hawks, but what really stood out was this block, his one of two: