By defeating a superior opponent, Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks demonstrated that they have a championship mindset.
To overcome Grayson Allen's expulsion, Antetokounmpo finished with 30 points and 12 rebounds to help the Bucks win 94-90 at the United Center on Friday night. Both teams shot below 40 percent from the field overall and had their lowest 3-point percentages of the season in the process.
Despite scoring 35 points, DeMar DeRozan missed a 3-point attempt that would have given the Bulls the lead with 23 seconds remaining. Khris Middleton of Milwaukee scored two free throws with 15.8 seconds left on the clock to bring the game to a conclusion.
In the last minute of the third quarter, DeRozan made a jumper to give the Bulls a 67-66 lead against the Pacers. DeRozan finished the game 17 of 18 from the line. When the Bulls took a four-point lead early in the fourth quarter, it was the Bucks who rallied and took the lead for good on Antetokounmpo's free shot with 7:24 still to play in the game.
Middleton led the Bucks with 16 points and 11 rebounds, while Bobby Portis chipped in with 12 points and 13 rebounds for the team. Jrue Holiday led all scorers with 13 points. The Bulls were led by Nikola Vucevic, who finished with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Matt Thomas contributed 11 points and made three of five three-point tries.
"We talk about versatility in a lot of different ways," Budenholzer said. "And I think you've got to be versatile in the kind of games you can win. I'm very proud of the guys, for them to find a way to win tonight. We had to earn that."