EditorsNote: minor fixes throughout, adds Ryan Arcidiacono’s first name in last graph
Khris Middleton’s 3-point shot from the top of the key with 5.2 seconds left lifted the Milwaukee Bucks past the visiting Chicago Bulls 116-113 on Wednesday night.
Justin Holiday had a clean look from 27 feet to tie the game, but his shot bounced high off the rim and tumbled into Malcolm Brogdon’s arms to seal the Bucks’ win.
Giannis Antetokounmpo had put the Bucks up 113-111 with a pair of free throws with 36 seconds left but Zach LaVine’s layup set the stage for Middleton’s heroics.
Antetokounmpo finished with a season-high 36 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists for Milwaukee.
Brogdon went 5 for 5 from 3-point range in the third quarter and finished with 24 points, making all six of his 3-point tries in the game. Middleton added 17 points, including going 3 for 6 from 3-point range as the Bucks improved to 11-2 at their new home, Fiserv Forum.
Zach LaVine and Jabari Parker led the Bulls with 24 points each. Lavine also contributed nine rebounds and seven assists while Parker, the former first-round pick of the Bucks, added eight rebounds and five assists.
There were 14 lead changes and the game was tied 13 times.
The last time these two teams met on Nov. 16, the Bulls jumped out to an 18-point first-half lead. The Bucks stormed back and scored 78 points in the second half, outscoring Chicago by 37 points and winning by 19.
Wednesday’s script followed closely what happened in the earlier game, at least in the first quarter.
The Bulls started off strong again, scoring 40 in the first 12 minutes and taking a 10-point lead. The Bulls shot 67 percent and Parker and LaVine each scored 10.
The Bucks caught the Bulls and tied the game at 48-all on Brook Lopez’s two-footer with 5:55 to play in the half.
The Bucks took a 63-62 halftime lead on Antetokounmpo’s driving layup.
On a day the Bulls announced that guard Denzel Valentine would miss the rest of the season after having surgery on his left ankle, Ryan Arcidiacono stepped into the starting lineup and went 6 for 12 from the field and made 5 of 9 from beyond the arc, scoring 22 points. He also had five rebounds, four assists and five steals.
—Field Level Media