Revenge can be sweet, and last night against the Milwaukee Bucks the Trail Blazers should’ve been looking for some. In their first meeting on the Bucks’ home court this season, forward Giannis Antetokounmpo took the Blazers to pieces single handedly. He had marks in every column, and scored a career high 44 points. There was no room on the highlight reel for anything the Blazers did because Giannis took up the whole thing. And with seconds left with the Blazers up by one, who steals the ball for a fast break dunk and the heartbreaking win? Giannis. The Blazers needed to contain him this time around.

Last night the Blazers were playing their first home game after a successful 4-1 eastern conference road trip against some worthy opponents. The Bucks were facing a confident, and rested Blazers team with a tinge of bloodlust to boot. Contending with Giannis shouldn’t have been too difficult either because the Blazers would likely be ready for his onslaught. Plus, Jusuf Nurkic seemed to pick up some steam in their recent travels, and Al-Farouq Aminu was returning from his ankle injury. Hopefully they’d be ready to take care of business. The Blazers were also debuting their new, red “statement” jerseys, so they kind of looked like they were gonna play red hot.


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Too bad they played wonky as hell instead. The Bucks manhandled the Blazers, and with some help from the officials in the fourth quarter, chalked up a win, 103-91.

Nurk came out swinging in the first. He had six points and five rebounds in the first five minutes. The Bucks’ Thon Maker tried to put Nurk down with a nice, flagrant elbow to the neck, but Nurk got right back up and scored one of two from the free-throw line. When he eventually sat, Nurk took 12 points and seven rebounds to the pine. Here’s a picture of him in action.


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While Nurk’s efforts were solid, the Bucks held the lead through most of the first. They looked strong and fast, they spread their scoring evenly across the squad, and Khris Middleton ended the quarter with a long three, pushing their lead up to 12. It was a bumpy start for the home team.


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“Chief” Aminu opened up the second with two gorgeous threes, cutting the Bucks’ lead down to six in a flash. It was glorious seeing him back and draining long balls. It looked like the Blazers were making a run, but sadly, Nurk and Damian Lillard decided to fumble around and perpetrate some super heinous turnovers. They opened the quarter with a big bang, then just went silent and sloppy. The Bucks collapsed onto every ball the Blazers were holding like hungry dogs. The Bucks strutted into the locker room with the lead, 60-55.

The second half opened up with a whimper from the Blazers. Turnovers were rampant and ugly. The Blazers were all but tying a bow around the ball on and handing it to the Bucks. And man, were they were taking full advantage of it. The Blazers had 16 turnovers and a 21 point deficit to climb heading into the final quarter. They needed an awakening.


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Right around the half way mark in the fourth the Blazers finally found a handle and started climbing. Then came an unreal foul called under the Bucks’ hoop that looked like a clean block with little to no body contact from Nurk. Coach Stotts and Nurk went ballistic. The arena roared with boos. After the replay went up on the big screen, the boos became deafening. You could barely hear Mark Mason as he announced that both Stotts and Nurk were being dealt technical fouls. It was a bad, bad scene.

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Photo By Bruce Ely /


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After a huge bummer like that, there was no coming back The crest of the mountain was way too high for the Blazers too reach, and you could see their morale drop to the court. Huge bummer of a loss. It looks like the Bucks just have the Blazers' number this season...