DeMar DeRozan had 25 points and the San Antonio Spurs had a season-high 19 three-pointers to beat Milwaukee 126-104 on Monday night, snapping the Bucks five-game winning streak, The Associated Press reported.
“It’s big, confidence building,” DeRozan said. “Letting us know we could compete with the best teams in this league.”
San Antonio finished 19 for 35 on three-pointers in handing Milwaukee its largest defeat of the season.
Patty Mills added 21 points, including six for 10 on three-pointers. LaMarcus Aldridge and Rudy Gay added 18 points each, going a combined four for five on three-pointers.
Giannis Antetokounmpo had 24 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists for Milwaukee and Donte DiVincenzo added 16 points.
Four games after setting a season-high with 18 three-pointers against Detroit, the Spurs bested that mark when Gay hit the team’s 19th against Milwaukee.
Aldridge has keyed that run, going 16 for 23 on three-pointers in his last five games.
“With LaMarcus joining us on the three-point line and having the ability to knock them down, it does wonders in terms of spacing,” Mills said.
Aldridge has shot so well on 3s that the Bucks almost overlooked DeRozan’s mid-range game.
“We have a ton of respect for (DeRozan),” Milwaukee coach Mike Budenholzer said.
The Bucks, whose last loss was December 25 at Philadelphia, maintain the league’s best record at 32-6.
Popovich somewhat agreed when asked if this was the Spurs’ most complete game of the season.
“It’d be hard to argue against that, I think,” he said.
“The physicality was good. We started out the third quarter a little poorly as we have, going to try to figure that out, but I thought we were more consistent tonight in our physicality and executing game plan, we were more consistent. It was a good night.”
Milwaukee defeated San Antonio 127-118 on Saturday at home but could not maintain its early momentum in a rare home-and-home, back-to-back games.
Milwaukee opened the game with three straight 3-pointers but San Antonio went on a 13-4 run in taking its first lead at 15-13. DeRozan blocked Antetokounmpo layup during the run, tying up the 6-foot-11 forward as he drove through the lane and forcing a jump ball.