MILWAUKEE (ABC4 Sports) – Even without all-stars Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kris Middleton, the Milwaukee Bucks proved to be too much for the Utah Jazz in a dominating 123-97 victory Saturday night.
The 97 points is the lowest point total of the season for the Jazz.
Bobby Portis had 22 points and 14 rebounds starting in place of Giannis Antetokounmpo, who sat out because of soreness in his left knee, the fifth game he has missed this season. Middleton has soreness in his right knee.
Portis was 9 of 16 from the field and made two 3-pointers.
“That wasn’t great,” Utah coach Will Hardy said. “It’s never as bad as it feels sometimes. Their physicality bothered us tonight, more so when we had the ball than when they had the ball.”
Jrue Holiday added 21 points and eight assists and center Brook Lopez had 18 points and eight rebounds to help the Bucks rebound from a 41-point loss in Memphis on Thursday night. Rookie Marjon Beauchamp added 18 points in 19 minutes off the bench.
Milwaukee improved to 14-3 at home and 21-8 overall.
Malik Beasley and Lauri Markkanen each had 18 points for Utah. The Jazz were coming off back-to-back home victories over New Orleans, including a 132-129 overtime win on Thursday.
Nickeil Alexander-Walker had 14 points off the bench, while Jordan Clarkson added 13 points and Kelly Olynyk had 12.
The Bucks made 18 three-pointers and shot 53.8 percent from the field. Milwaukee pulled away in the fourth quarter, outscoring the jazz 31-14 in the final period.
The Jazz sank 16 three-pointers and made 45.3 percent of its shots overall.
Former Jazzman Joe Ingles is scheduled to make his Milwaukee debut Monday night when the Bucks play at New Orleans. The 6-foot-9 Ingles, signed as a free agent in the offseason, played eight seasons for Utah but suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament on Jan. 30 last season.
“The expectation is that he will play on Monday,” Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “His passing is probably the thing that stands out the most. His 3-point shooting is going to be really helpful for us.”
All five Utah starters are averaging career highs in assists. “They’re bought into playing as a group,” Jazz coach Will Hardy said. “We talked from the beginning of training camp about play hard and pass. Those are the two things we care about.”
The Jazz will next take on Donovan Mitchell and the Cleveland Cavaliers Monday night.