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Recap: Suns take down Bucks with balanced attack, 114-106

The Phoenix Suns got a needed win against a short-handed Bucks squad.

NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Phoenix Suns Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Phoenix Suns did what they were supposed to do, even if it was ugly at times. They secured their 30th win of the season with a 114-106 victory over the Bucks.

Damian Lillard and Brook Lopez didn’t suit up for Milwaukee and Khris Middleton went down with an ankle injury early. Despite that, the Bucks gave the Suns a fight and didn’t make it easy.

Ultimately, the balanced attack from Phoenix’s stars was too much for the short-handed Bucks to handle.

Key Performers

Devin Booker — 32 points, 4 assists, 1 rebound on 12-21 FG in 38 minutes

Kevin Durant — 28 points, 10 rebounds, 1 assist on 11-21 FG in 39 minutes

Giannis Atetokounmpo —34 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists on 13-24 FG in 37 minutes

Malik Beasley — 22 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, on 1-13 FG in 36 minutes

Game Flow

First Half

The Suns got off to a slow start, scoring just 11 points in the first 7:30 of action with seven of those early points coming from Devin Booker.

The first quarter of action saw each team struggle to find a rhythm. Missing easy looks, careless turnovers, and long possessions contributed to the stagnant offensive 12 minutes of action.

Khris Middleton went down with an ankle injury after a Kevin Durant closeout that was whistled for a flagrant one. He would not return.

Heading into the second quarter, the Suns trailed by one, 23-22. Booker led all scorers with 11 first-quarter points. Malik Beasley led Milwaukee with 8 points.

After a slow start, the Suns picked it up a bit to start the second quarter.

Bradley Beal had a pair of tough moves, including this “and-one” finish over Cam Payne where he hit him with the “too small” after.

The Bucks answered with a quick run of their own to re-take the lead, 35-31 after a rare Giannis three-pointer.

The shorthanded Bucks had no trouble keeping up with the Suns throughout the first half, and held their own in the non-Giannis minutes. Former Suns Cam Payne and Jae Crowder provided a spark along with Bobby Portis off the Bucks’ bench unit.

At the half, led by one point again, 49-48. Devin Booker led all scorers with 16 points at the break. Giannis led the Bucks with 14.

Second Half

The third quarter began with an emphasis on pushing the pace from a Phoenix team that was sluggish from the start.

Devin Booker quickly poured in 11 points in the first seven minutes of the third quarter to push his point total to 27.

Giannis had a scare with a back injury after posting up Kevin Durant, but was just fine as he remained in the game and put Drew Eubanks on a poster shortly after.

Right as the Suns started to create some separation, the Bucks went on an 11-2 run to storm back into the game.

The Suns took a six-point lead into the 4th quarter, leading 79-73. Booker had 32 after 3 quarters of action.

Phoenix started to turn it up a notch with Giannis and Booker on the bench and extended the lead to double digits.

Kevin Durant had the poster of the year for the Suns with an emphatic slam over the Greek Freak. Just a vicious throwdown.

Phoenix did just enough to eke out a tough win against a feisty Bucks that didn’t back down.

The finishing touches were put on by Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal after Devin Booker did the heavy lifting in the first 3 quarters. On to the next one.

Up Next?

Thursday: Suns vs. Jazz at 7 pm — Footprint Center

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