3 takeaways from Milwaukee Bucks’ ugly loss to Minnesota Timberwolves

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - MARCH 19 (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - MARCH 19 (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Wesley Matthews, Brook Lopez, Minnesota Timberwolves, Karl-Anthony Towns, Jarred Vanderbilt
MINNEAPOLIS, MN – MARCH 19 (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images) /

Brook Lopez looked excellent in his first start for the Milwaukee Bucks since October’s opening night

With Antetokounmpo sidelined, Brook Lopez received his first start since opening night back in October, with Bobby Portis sliding up to the power forward slot. Lopez had been coming off the bench in his previous two games since returning from his back rehab, but he would see a larger role versus the Timberwolves with the Greek Freak out.

Lopez looked great in his first starting action in months, largely due to a fantastic start to the third quarter. The big man scored a quick 11 points in the period on 5-of-5 shooting, finding himself in a nice groove as he attacked the hoop time and time again, throwing down vicious dunks or cleaning up after others as he pulled down two offensive rebounds. In addition to his scoring output, Lopez tallied a solid block in the period to assert himself on the defensive side of things as well.

In total, Lopez finished with 15 points on 6-of-10 field goal shooting, four rebounds, two blocks, and an assist in 20 and a half minutes on Saturday. It was unquestionably this best game of the season, though it does come in a small sample size of just four games. Nevertheless, the big man looked right at home on both sides of the ball, scoring the basketball with authority while valiantly protecting the paint on the other.

Hopefully this game can get Lopez going down the stretch as the Bucks attempt to finish out the regular season strong. It remains unclear whether the veteran will retain his starting spot for the champs in their fascinating four-man center rotation following this strong performance, but that could be something the Bucks will experiment with. Despite the gruesome defeat, seeing Lopez back in action making plays on both ends of the court was certainly a noticeable bright spot.