A banner backcourt
Without a doubt, the two-headed performance of Malcolm Brogdon and Eric Bledsoe powered the Bucks through their various ups and downs over the course of their win against the Kings Wednesday night.
Combining to score 51 points, Brogdon had the more efficient outing of the two, albeit on a small volume as he connected on 9 of his 11 attempts from the field (4-of-6 from three, 3-of-3 from the foul line) to set a new season scoring high with 25 points. He also pitched in five rebounds and two assists.
Brogdon got off to a fast and furious start shortly after the opening tip by sinking his first three 36 seconds into the night and finishing the first quarter in double figures.
While the Virginia alum’s early scoring pace ground down to a slow crawl in the second half, his clutch three with 16 seconds to go in overtime more than made up for that, as well as his following two free throws that essentially served as the difference in the end.
Bledsoe, meanwhile, had the more well-rounded performance of two by finishing with his first triple-double of the season with 26 points on 11-of-20 from the field (4-of-7 from long range), 13 assists, 12 rebounds, four turnovers, as well as a steal, and was a +1 in over 35-and-a-half minutes.
The Birmingham native’s fingerprints were all over the game as it wore on, filling the void that Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo normally fills on a nightly basis (more on him in a bit). That eventually led to Bledsoe locking down his triple-double at the 8:35 mark of the fourth quarter by taking a page out of Antetokounmpo’s playbook and utilizing the Tony Snell play to supply the reserve sharpshooter a corner three off a dribble handoff.
With that said, Bledsoe’s biggest moments of the night came at the end of regulation where he not only knotted things up at 126 with 11 seconds to go in the fourth, but matched the elusive De’Aaron Fox step for step on the ensuing possession that ended in a steal for Bledsoe and forced overtime.
It was certainly a well-balanced effort all around for the Bucks, but the combination of both Bledsoe and Brogdon’s clutch play was particularly essential to them coming away with their victory.