Is there something Giannis Antetokounmpo can’t do?
He passes like a point guard, rebounds like a center and scores like a guy whose job it is to carry his team. On Sunday night, the player known as the Greek Freak, picked up his fourth triple-double in 11 games to lead the Milwaukee Bucks to a 109-100 win over the Nets at Barclays Center.
Antetokounmpo, who nearly had a triple double at halftime, finished the game with 28 points, 14 assists and 11 rebounds. He also had two blocks, including a vicious over-the-top block of Brook Lopez that seemed to send the ball to another planet.
“He had a great game,” Bucks coach Jason Kidd said. “He almost had a triple double there in the first half. Sometimes it doesn’t look like he’s sweating or breathing hard. That just shows how talented he is.”
The 6-11 Antetokounmpo led the Bucks on a 12-2 run in the fourth quarter to hand the Nets their fifth straight loss.
The Nets (18-48) led 79-78 after three quarters. In the fourth quarter they looked both lost and sloppy, turning the ball over 12 times and failing to get the ball to Lopez, who had been their most consistent offensive weapon. Lopez led the Nets with 20 points, but was scoreless in the fourth quarter after taking only one shot.
“Turnovers. We played well enough for three quarters and then we had crucial turnovers that you can’t recover from,” Nets interim coach Tony Brown said. “And obviously they have capable guys that can make plays.”
Sean Kilpatrick, who spent a lot of time guarding Antetokounmpo, had guarded him before in summer league and said he knew what kind of night he was in for.
“I kind of expected what he did today,” Kilpatrick said. “He’s a great player. When you have someone that tall who can move the way he does — at certain points in the game he was running the point guard position — there’s not a lot of people who can do that.”
Kilpatrick, who came off the bench, was the Nets’ second-leading scorer with 19 points. Thaddeus Young added 17 and 10 rebounds.
Notes & quotes: Don’t blame Lopez for the Nets woes, Kidd said. “There’s been a lot of change for him, so it’s not fair to put it on him,” Kidd said when asked about the Nets losing while Lopez is having a standout season. Lopez is the only player left over from the 2013-14 Nets teams that Kidd coached to the first round of the playoffs “Coaches, teammates, practice facilities, arenas,” Kidd said. “There’s been change.”