Bucks break warriors' streak

Golden State's record 24-game winning run to start the NBA season ends with loss to Bucks

Bucks guard Michael Carter-Williams (left) reacting in front of Warriors guard Stephen Curry after a Bucks basket late in the fourth quarter. The Bucks beat the Warriors 108-95.
Bucks guard Michael Carter-Williams (left) reacting in front of Warriors guard Stephen Curry after a Bucks basket late in the fourth quarter. The Bucks beat the Warriors 108-95. PHOTO: REUTERS

MILWAUKEE • The streak is over.

Four times during their National Basketball Association (NBA) record 24-game winning streak to start this season, the Golden State Warriors have rallied from 10-point deficits. Twice, they have accomplished that task in the fourth quarter.

But there was no miracle comeback this time and history will show that the Warriors' winning streak came to an end in the most unlikely of ways - a 95-108 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks in front of a sold-out crowd of 18,717 at the Bradley Center.

"Even if you're 24-and-1, losing still sucks," said the Warriors' interim coach Luke Walton. "But what they did to start the season, there's no reason for anyone to hang their heads in that locker room for losing that game."

Golden State, who have not lost a regular-season contest since falling to New Orleans 100-103 on April 7 of last season, led for all of 1min 35sec on Saturday. And not once after Festus Ezeli converted a three-point play with 10:08 left in the first half.

They challenged again in the third, getting within a point with 1:32 to play. But every time Golden State threatened, the Bucks answered with a stop or a run.

"We stuck together tonight," said centre Greg Monroe, who led Milwaukee with 28 points and 11 rebounds. "We knew what they had coming in. We wanted to make sure we did the things we did, the things we go over and try to make it as tough as possible for them."

Monroe was a force down the stretch, scoring 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting in the final quarter as the Bucks went up by as many as 15.

Point guard Michael Carter-Williams also had 11 in the final quarter, including an exclamation-point dunk with 32 seconds to play.

"Emotions were definitely high," said Carter-Williams, who finished with 17 points, five assists and five steals. "Everyone contributed and did different things down the stretch. It's a great win for us."

In all, five Bucks players scored in double figures including forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, who had a big night, scoring 11 points with 12 rebounds and 10 assists for his first career triple-double.

Shooting guard O.J. Mayo finished with 18 points and forward Jabari Parker added 19 with seven rebounds and a blocked shot for the Bucks, who shot 49.4 per cent.

Milwaukee were good offensively, but did their best work on the defensive end, where Golden State shot 40.9 per cent from the field and 6-of-26 from beyond the arc.

Stephen Curry made 10 of his 21 shots to finish with 28 points, but was 2-for-8 from distance.

Shooting guard Klay Thompson, back after missing Friday's 124-119 double-overtime victory over the Boston Celtics due to a sore ankle, went 4-of-14 from the field and 2-for-7 on three-point attempts to finish with 12 points.

"It's disappointing," Thompson said. "I think we beat ourselves, especially on my end. I didn't play well or shoot well at all so it's very disappointing."

The Warriors, with 28 straight regular-season wins dating back to last season, fell just five wins shy of equalling the NBA all-time record of 33 straight victories set by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1971-72 season.

In a strange twist of flashback fate, the Bucks were also the team that ended the Lakers' streak with a 120-104 victory on Jan 9, 1972.

The Warriors loss also marked the end of a seven-game road trip. Golden State are off now until Wednesday, when the Phoenix Suns visit Oracle Arena.

"I'm sure the long flight home tomorrow, we'll have some guys unwinding a bit," Walton said. "I bet there will be a little relief mentally going forward from this point. It was a lot of fun and we plan on continuing to win a lot of ball games."


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 14, 2015, with the headline 'BUCKS BREAK WARRIORS' STREAK'. Subscribe