Giannis Antetokounmpo drops career-high 55 points to lead Bucks past Wizards
Giannis Antetokounmpo is the fourth star in the league to drop a 50-point game in as many days
It was only a matter of time before Giannis Antetokounmpo joined the club.
Antetokounmpo went off on Tuesday night at Fiserv Forum, dropping a career-high 55 points in the Milwaukee Bucks' 123-113 win over the Washington Wizards.
His performance marked the fourth 50-point game in as many days in what has been a wild stretch of basketball in the NBA.
"He's just been phenomenal," Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said, via Bally Sports. "It's hard to come up with all the words to describe him. He was incredibly special tonight."
55 points on the night with this one. 🔥 pic.twitter.com/GpNR4s37N1
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) January 4, 2023
The Bucks lead throughout most of the contest on Tuesday, and closed out the first half on a 15-0 run spanning nearly the final four minutes of the second quarter. That burst gave them a 12-point lead at the break, one that the Wizards struggled repeatedly to cut down.
The closest they got was within two near the start of the fourth quarter after a Daniel Gifford free throw, but the Bucks quickly surged ahead once again and cruised to the 10-point win — thanks largely to Antetokounmpo.
Antetokounmpo dropped 12 of the Bucks' final 14 points of the night en route to the win, their second in three games. He shot 20-of-33 from the field and added 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Brook Lopez dropped 21 points and 12 rebounds for Milwaukee, and Bobby Portis added 17 points and 13 rebounds off the bench. Kristaps Porzingis led the Wizards with 22 points and nine rebounds, and Kyle Kuzma added 20 points and four rebounds.
Antetokounmpo's 55 points marks the 14th 50-point game of the season. By comparison, there were only 19 such games throughout the league last year. Both Donovan Mitchell, who put up 71 points, and Klay Thompson scored at least 50 in their respective games on Monday. Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic had 51 points on Saturday.
Antetokoumpo has now scored at least 40 points in the Bucks' last three games, too. He's averaged 47.6 points and 17.3 rebounds over that stretch, something only Bob McAdoo and Moses Malone have done over the past 50 years. He's averaging 32.1 points and 11.8 rebounds this season, both of which are the third-best in the league. Only Doncic and Joel Embiid, respectively, are scoring more.