Basketball

Antetokounmpo's brilliance can't stop gritty Cavs

Giannis Antetokounmpo produced a scintillating 40-point masterclass but it was not enough to stop LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers from claiming a thrilling victory over the Milwaukee Bucks yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Antetokounmpo's superb display, which included nine rebounds and three assists, threatened to overwhelm the Cavs as they sought to bounce back from Sunday's shock loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

But 30 points from James and 32 from Kevin Love helped the Cavs hang on for a 124-119 victory at Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena.

James and Antetokounmpo seemed locked in their own personal duel for long periods of an absorbing contest and finished with similar figures.

Later, James admitted the 22-year-old Athens-born player - nicknamed "The Greek Freak" - was all but impossible to defend against.

"He attacked non-stop for however many minutes he was on the floor," James said.

"You got to put multiple bodies in front of him and then when you do put multiple bodies in front of him, he's still able to score. He's great in transition and great getting at the rim."

Cleveland improved to 5-6 with the win, while the Bucks fell to 4-6. - AFP

OTHER RESULTS:

Indiana 112 New Orleans 117, Washington 99 Dallas 113, New York 118 Charlotte 113, Toronto 119 Chicago 114, San Antonio 120 LA Clippers 107, Denver 112 Brooklyn 104, Utah 97 Philadelphia 104, Portland 97 Memphis 98, Sacramento 94 Oklahoma 86

NBA