A four match journey starts with losing bucks

Milwaukee – The Milwaukee Bucks had the MVP in uniform Monday night, while the Portland Trail Blazers did not. It showed in the result.

The Trail Blazers, playing without Damian Lillard (right slugger breed), managed to stay within striking distance of the Bucks for most of the night before falling 119-111 in front of a crowd of 17,341 Monday at the Fiserv Forum.

“I thought the effort was good, we fought really hard in the game,” Trail Blazers coach Chusney Billups said. “We got a very good production out of everybody, they all came to play. We gave ourselves a chance against a good team. You obviously miss a lot when you’re the lady out there, on both sides of the floor and your captain, missing your captain there. But for the most part, I thought It was a good effort.”

The Trail Blazers are now 10-7 overall and 6-3 on the road this season. Portland has now lost three straight and four of the last five.

Despite missing four of their first five attempts, the Trail Blazers managed to hold on with the Bucks, who have the second-best record in the NBA, going into halftime. Portland managed to shoot 58 percent from the field in the first quarter to take a two-point lead in the second.

While they couldn’t find a three-point hit most of the night, Portland’s hot shooting from inside the arc would carry on, with Anfernee Simons putting up 11 points in the second quarter to help the visitors go into the half just two points ahead.

Anfernee Simons Highlights (29 points) | Trail Blazers in Bucks | November 21

However, after winning the first quarter and scoring only four goals in the second, the Blazers struggled scoring—scoring only 18 points on 25 percent shooting from the field and 0-of-6 shooting from three—and held off the Bucks. Who did the same – Milwaukee went 12 of 20 from the field – in the third quarter. After eight changes up front, eight ties, and neither team leading by more than seven in the first half, the Pax dominated, behind 19 points from Giannis Antietekounmo, in third place.

“The third quarter really hurt us, especially at the end,” said Billups. “The last three or four minutes, it was tough, we really struggled to score.”

But Portland, as they had all season, refused to go down quietly. Although they couldn’t narrow the deficit closer than eight, they did enough to make Milwaukee earn it fourth.

“I think we competed really well, played hard, and didn’t give up until the last minute,” said Simmons. “So I think that’s a positive thing. We compete every night, giving ourselves the best chance of winning and I think that’s all we can ask for.”

Simmons led Portland with 29 points on 12 of 23 shooting from the field to go with five assists, four rebounds and a steal in 37 minutes. Jerami Grant had 18 points, four rebounds, two assists and two blocks in 35 minutes.

Jusuf Nurkic, who scored Portland’s first seven points Monday night, finished with a double-double of 16 points and 10 rebounds while also handing out three assists. Josh Hart almost had a double-double of his own, scoring 17 points on nine shots while also grabbing nine rebounds in nearly 40 minutes.

Trendon Watford had 10 points, four rebounds, an assist and a steal in 12 minutes off the bench.

Antetokounmo led all scorers with 37 points while also notching seven rebounds, six assists and two steals in 35 minutes. Grayson Allen and Jrue Holiday each finish with 17.

Next, the Trail Blazers head to Cleveland to take on the Cavaliers, the team with the fourth-best record in the NBA, on Wednesday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 4 p.m

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