MILWAUKEE (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo had 31 points and 10 rebounds, Khris Middleton added 27 points and the Milwaukee Bucks pulled away for a 122-101 win over the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night.
Antetokounmpo had his way around the rim with his usual array of dunks and layups, shooting 12 of 18. He secured his 18th double-double of the year with 1:01 left in the third quarter.
The 6-foot-11 star passed to Thon Maker, who hit an open 3 from the corner to extend what had been a 10-point halftime lead to a 93-74 edge. Maker made one of the Bucks’ five 3s in the third quarter to put the game out of reach.
The lead was so safe that coach Jason Kidd rested Antetokounmpo for the entire fourth quarter.
Minus leading scorer Victor Oladipo (24.9 points per game) for a fourth straight game because of a knee injury, the Pacers couldn’t keep up with Antetokounmpo’s athleticism on both ends of the floor.
Domantas Sabonis had a career-high 24 points on 10-of-13 shooting for Indiana, which lost its season-high fifth straight game. Darren Collison added 17 points.
The Pacers shot just 20 percent (3 of 15) from 3-point range.
Antetokounmpo had 21 points on 8-of-11 shooting in the first half to help the Bucks build a 62-52 halftime lead.
Pacers: The Bucks shot 58 percent overall, the fourth time in five games that Indiana allowed an opponent to make at least half its shots. … Officials whistled coach Nate McMillan for a technical with 4:57 left in the third quarter following a contested dunk by Antetokounmpo. … Sabonis led the team in the first half with 14 points after hitting 6 of 8 shots.
Bucks: Alley-oop buckets were a staple of the offense early with Antetokounmpo and Bledsoe each connecting on crowd-pleasing dunks in a first quarter that ended with Milwaukee leading 34-26. The Bucks held a 16-10 edge on points in the paint after the first, before the Pacers tried to get more protective around the rim. Antetokounmpo still held a high-flying advantage because of his quickness and length.
Pacers: Open a four-game homestand on Saturday by hosting the Chicago Bulls.
Bucks: Host the Toronto Raptors on Friday, four days after a losing in overtime at the Air Canada Centre.