Reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo has no intention of giving up his crown.
In a dominant display at the Staples Center, the Greek Freak scored 38 points, grabbed 16 rebounds, and dished out 9 assists while also recording two steals and two blocks in 36 minutes of action as the Bucks handed the LA Clippers their first home loss.
Reigning Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard was rested for today's game, due to load management.
Here are the biggest takeaways from today's game:
Giannis' red-hot start to the season
Antetokounmpo has been an absolute tear to start this season.
Through eight games, he's averaging 29.0 points (5th in the league), 14.5 rebounds (2nd in the league), and 7.6 assists (8th in the league). He only has one triple-double for the season but including the Clippers' game, he has two games where he's missed out on a triple-double by one assist.
He continues to make history with his all-round contribution.
Giannis Antetokounmpo had 38 Pts, 16 Reb and 9 Ast in a win at the Clippers.- ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) November 7, 2019
He became the 1st player since the merger to have 3 straight 30-15-5 games and the 1st player in NBA history to have 200+ Pts, 100+ Reb and 50+ Ast in their first 8 games of a season.
h/t @EliasSports pic.twitter.com/YKo4bsHDIg
What stood out in this game was his 3-point shooting. After having four made 3-pointers in the previous seven games of the season, Giannis knocked down a career-high four 3-pointers in this game:
Giannis (4/7) was feeling it from 3PT land tonight 🔥 pic.twitter.com/zWMGp43W5s- Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) November 7, 2019
The Clippers are scary-good
The Clippers had no Leonard and no Paul George and yet, against a possible NBA Finalists in the Bucks, they took the contest down to the final minute and eventually only lost by five points.
Their dynamic bench duo, Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell started this game and took their production to a new level. Both players finished with 34 points apiece, a career-high for Harrell who also finished with 13 rebounds and five assists on 13-of-25 shooting.
💪 @MONSTATREZZ scores a career-high 34 PTS and ties a career-high 13 REB‼️ #ClipperNation pic.twitter.com/MNXowHwcga- NBA (@NBA) November 7, 2019
Williams recorded 11 assists and five rebounds. Other starters in Patrick Beverley and Landry Shamet combined for 34 points on 11-of-19 shooting (7-12 3P FG).
They were down by as many as 17 in the second quarter, but the Clippers kept chipping away at it. They committed 19 turnovers but they scored 23 points on the Bucks' 15 turnovers.
Clutch George Hill showcases Bucks' depth
In just 24 minutes, veteran George Hill scored 24 on 9-of-14 shooting without committing a single turnover. He knocked down six 3-pointers on seven attempts and then came up huge with this clutch tip-in slam:
George Hill GETS UP for the TIP SLAM!@Bucks lead by 7 with 1:21 remaining on ESPN! pic.twitter.com/t2I3h3bcKn- NBA (@NBA) November 7, 2019
Hill scored 24 of the Bucks' 47 bench points, with 14 key points coming from veteran sharptshooter Kyle Korver. The trio of Hill, Korver and Robin Lopez came up huge but the shots weren't droppng for the rest of the reserves.
Ersan Ilyasova, Donte DiVincenzo and Pat Connaughton - key rotation players - who were a combined 0-of-7 from the field which is highly unlikely to happen on a consistent basis.