Giannis Antetokounmpo did it again.
Finishing with 37 points and 11 rebounds, the reigning MVP registered his 14th 30-point, 10-rebound game of the season.
He compiled the monster line in just 27 minutes on court. It's the fourth time this season Antetokounmpo has had a 30-point, 10-rebound game in under 30 minutes - there have only been 10 such games across the entire league.
GIANNIS OVER THE TOP!!#FearTheDeer pic.twitter.com/qhnr9Cfiel- Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) December 14, 2019
The 127-114 win seems like another standard Milwaukee Bucks double-digit win, but it wasn't as stress-free as the final score might suggest.
At the 9:06 mark of the third quarter, Eric Bledsoe limped to the locker room after a collision with teammate Wesley Matthews. Matthews' knee crashed into Bledsoe's shin and the Milwaukee point guard was ruled out for the rest of the game with a shin contusion.
Then, Antetokounmpo was whistled for an offensive foul at the 7:19 mark of that same third quarter. Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer was unsuccessful in using his coach's challenge on the play, and Antetokounmpo would sit with four fouls with Milwaukee trailing 75-74.
Adding to the double-blow for the Bucks was Memphis Grizzlies big man Jaren Jackson Jr. turning into a human flamethrower, scoring 24 points in the quarter, including an absolutely absurd seven baskets from beyond the arc.
With their MVP stuck on the bench, Milwaukee fell behind by as many as 10 points and entered the fourth trailing 95-90.
Drive to the paint?- Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) December 14, 2019
Nah, LET IT FLY. pic.twitter.com/Fk9bPZdm21
With a combination of dunks, free-throws and long-range bombs, Antetokounmpo simply decided his team wasn't losing on this night.
Eight minutes and forty-one seconds after the fourth period started, Antetokounmpo had piled on 17 points and the Bucks had outscored the Grizzlies 28-11. His work was done. The Bucks had extended their winning streak to 17 and joined the Los Angeles Lakers with the league's best record at 23-3.
The fourth-quarter dominance shouldn't have surprised anyone, as the 9.0 points Antetokounmpo is now averaging in the final 12 minutes is second in the league only to James Harden.
Perhaps the most impressive number when assessing his impact late in games is his shooting from beyond the arc. After hitting both his attempts against Memphis, Antetokounmpo is now 14-for-32 (43.7 percent) from deep in the final period.
Antetokounmpo has made the fourth-quarter his own so far in 2019-20, and tonight the Bucks really needed it.
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