Behind a dominant 50-point performance from Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Milwaukee Bucks survived a tough fight from the Phoenix Suns and record a 105-98 Game 6 win.
Thus, winning their second title in franchise history and first since 1971. The Greek Freak also finished with 14 rebounds, five blocks and two assists while shooting 16-of-25 from the field and an incredible near-perfect 17-of-19 from the free-throw line.
It was all tied up leading into the final period but Milwaukee sealed the victory by outscoring the Suns 28-21. Four other Bucks players score in double figures including 17 from Khris Middleton, 12 points and 11 assists from Jrue Holiday and 16 off the bench from Bobby Portis.
For the Suns, Chris Paul led the way with 26 points, Jae Crowder put up 15 points, 13 rebounds and four steals while Devin Booker only managed 19. Here are some key takeaways from the game at the buzzer:
Suns survive Giannis' monster 3rd quarter
The Bucks quickly took away that halftime deficit with a 16-8 start with Antetokounmpo scoring 12 of those 16 points. In fact, after having 17 at intermission, the Greek Freak exploded for 20 in the period.
Giannis GOES OFF for 20 points in the 3Q. 😳- NBA (@NBA) July 21, 2021
He's got 37 in the game.. we are tied entering the 4Q on ABC! #NBAFinals pic.twitter.com/dUGCPK9eZd
Including his lone assist from the period, he scored or assisted on 23 of the team's 35 points as the game, with huge stakes, was headed into its final quarter all tied up at 77.
Prior to Giannis scoring 20 points in a quarter twice in this series, the last player with 20 points in a Finals quarter was Michael Jordan in 1993. pic.twitter.com/znS0qWT1iB- ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) July 21, 2021
The third quarter also included essential contributions from Holiday (seven points, three assists) and Brook Lopez (six straight points).
However, the Suns withstood all of that together led by Booker's scored 11 points while Crowder chipped-in with seven points on just two plays
"Crowder fires away.. count it, and the foul!"- NBA (@NBA) July 21, 2021
Back and forth we go on ABC! #NBAFinals pic.twitter.com/Sw5NSaPOXO
Phoenix punch back to lead at halftime
Just like Game 5, the team to trail after the first quarter, hits back to lead at halftime. Behind a 31-13 second quarter, including a 19-4 run which began with a 10-0 start, the Suns rebounded and took a five-point (47-42) lead at halftime.
Chris Paul scored 10 points in the period and assisted on another five as he seemed more like himself in the second period.
Suns point guard duo delivers a 2Q spark! ✨- NBA (@NBA) July 21, 2021
13 PTS for Chris Paul, 10 for Cam Payne at halftime.@Suns lead 47-42.. #NBAFinals on ABC pic.twitter.com/9KrsO38zzu
Suns' reserve guard Cameron Payne was a huge part of the Suns' first half. He kept them afloat in the first quarter, scoring five late, and then he scored five of that 10-0 run to start the second quarter. For the Bucks, Antetokounmpo led the way with 17 while Bobby Portis chipped-in with 10 off the bench.
A couple of players in Booker and Holiday found it tough to get the ball in the hoop. The Suns' guard just had four points on 2-of-8 shooting while the Bucks guard had just two on 1-of-11 shooting from the field.
Bucks take control early
From leading 6-5, Milwaukee ran away with the game for the rest of the first quarter by going on a 22-11 run.
Antetokounmpo led all scorers with 10 points, including a perfect 4-of-4 from the field while Middleton had seven straight Bucks points during a stretch.
10 points, 6 boards for Giannis.. after 1Q! 😤 pic.twitter.com/9nGlbbvLr3- NBA (@NBA) July 21, 2021
Milwaukee, with a 19-8 rebounding advantage in the first period, shot 11-of-23 from the field while holding Phoenix to 7-of-24.
They held an early 14-6 points-in-the-paint advantage as every Suns starter scored in the first quarter but struggled to knock shots down efficiently as Booker was 0-of-4 after that shot in the first minute.
There was plenty at stake in this game and it seemed like the nerves took over in the first few minutes as both teams combined for seven turnovers before the first timeout, at the 6:51 mark in the first quarter.
Over the first 5:09 minutes, the Suns went scoreless for nearly four straight minutes but a Chris Paul 3-pointer helped them keep it close (6-5).
But before that, on the back of a few exciting plays, the mouth-watering clash got off to a great start.
Giannis BLOCK and BUCKET to start the game!! pic.twitter.com/C3JUMWnJTy- Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 21, 2021
The Greek Freak got things rolling with some great two-way action and got the crowd rolling but Booker silenced them quickly with a mid-ranger
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