3 takeaways from Milwaukee Bucks’ gutting loss to Charlotte Hornets

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - JANUARY 10 (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - JANUARY 10 (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Khris Middleton, Giannis Antetokounmpo
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA – JANUARY 10 (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) /

Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton both paved the way for the Milwaukee Bucks with big games, but their turnovers proved fatal

After big games against the Hornets on Saturday, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton followed the same blueprint on Monday.

Aside from his turnovers, which will be discussed in a moment, Middleton was solid in this one. He scored a team-high 27 points on 10-of-19 shooting, including 3-of-7 from deep as he led the Bucks in scoring, largely thanks to a big fourth quarter. Middleton scored 13 points in the final period as he helped propel Milwaukee’s valiant comeback effort, but his clutch heroics fell short in the end as the Bucks suffered a loss. In addition to his scoring, Middleton left his mark by dishing out an eye-catching 11 assists while pulling down seven rebounds and snatching three steals. He did some of everything during the game, particularly ball-handling with Jrue Holiday sidelined.

Though Antetokounmpo could not top his 43-point performance against the Hornets on Saturday, he stuffed the stat sheet with 26 points, 13 rebounds, eight assists, and a block and steal apiece. After his previous performance, Charlotte did everything possible to try and limit Antetokounmpo, which proved successful to some degree. There were times where he settled for ill-advised jump shots, especially from three, where he shot 1-of-5. While he was below his usual scoring output, the Greek Freak did a great job elsewhere with his passing and rebounding.

What truly plagued the Bucks throughout the night was the turnovers from these two as they combined to log 13 of the team’s 20. Middleton, who has been sloppy with the basketball as of late, logged seven turnovers on the night as his passing was a mess. Antetokounmpo was not much better as he tallied six, with the last one ending any hope of Milwaukee’s comeback as he threw a pass too high for Connaughton to catch with the Bucks trailing by two in the last few seconds. It was just a brutal night for these two with the turnovers, which they must clean up moving forward.

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The Bucks will get a few much-needed days off before they are back in action on Thursday against the Golden State Warriors. Be sure to catch that matchup at 6:30 p.m. CST on TNT.