Bucks down Rockets, Clippers clinch playoff spot

Ruben Hill
March 28, 2019

The Houston Rockets sure are lucky to have James Harden.

There have been ups and there have certainly been downs, but his talent is undeniable, and while the duo of Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton are the All-Stars of the team, it's Bledsoe's raw skill-set that will likely have a lot of input on Milwaukee's chances of capitalizing on what has been a phenomenal season. Harden posted 23 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists but shot 1 of 9 from 3-point range. His third-quarter output, which included a single-handed 11-0 run, almost matched the 18 points scored by Houston. Bucks demolished the guests in the third sequence with 32-18, and solved this meeting.

James Harden scored 23 and Chris Paul 19 for Houston, which lost for just the third time in 17 games.

Giannis Antetokounmpo thanked Bucks fans for voicing their support of his right to be named NBA MVP but would be not drawn into a discussion on whether he was more deserving than James Harden.

Milwaukee fought back in the second and eventually grabbed the lead.

Harden, Eric Gordon and P.J. Tucker shot a combined 2 of 22 from beyond the 3-point arc for Houston.

Jamal Muray saved the day with two free throws made with 9 seconds until the end, while on the other side, Blake Griffin missed a three for the OT. OG Anunoby had 10 points for Toronto before he groggily left the court with assistance with 4:10 to play in the game after a collision. Drummond had 13 buckets and 17 boards, while Reggie Jackson delivered 17 points. The lone downside for Los Angeles was that by clinching a postseason berth, the Clippers must give their 2019 first-round draft pick to the Boston Celtics to complete the Jeff Green trade of February 2016. The purple and gold confidently controlled this match, winning every quarter and making some show in the end. Bledsoe made 4-of-5 3-pointers in the third after missing his only two attempts in the first half.

The reigning league MVP scored 30 or more points in 32-straight games this season - the second-most in National Basketball Association history, behind only Wilt Chamberlain.

In other games, Magic defeated the Heat on the road and recorded a huge win 99-104, Clippers did the same to Timberwolves in Minnesota, 111-122, solving everything in the first quarter, 42-23.

Trae Young tallied 33 points and 12 assists, leading the Hawks past the Pelicans, 130-120. Dallas rookie sensation Luka Doncic tied Magic Johnson with his seventh triple-double in his first season, getting 28 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists.

Kemba Walker had 11 of his 38 points in overtime as the Charlotte Hornets beat the San Antonio Spurs 125-116 to stretch their winning streak to four games.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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