Bucks' NBA record long-range barrage sinks Heat | Inquirer Sports
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Bucks’ NBA record long-range barrage sinks Heat

/ 12:18 PM December 30, 2020

MIAMI, FLORIDA – DECEMBER 29: Donte DiVincenzo #0 of the Milwaukee Bucks shoots a three pointer against the Miami Heat during the third quarter at American Airlines Arena on December 29, 2020 in Miami, Florida.  (Michael Reaves/Getty Images/AFP)

LOS ANGELES – The Milwaukee Bucks set an NBA record for three-pointers in a game, draining 29 from beyond the arc in a 144-97 blowout win over the Miami Heat on Tuesday.

The Heat, who stunned the top-seeded Bucks in the second round of the 2020 Eastern Conference playoffs en route to the NBA Finals, never got a look in, trailing by as many as 51 in a game Milwaukee led all the way.

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Sam Merrill drilled the record-breaking 28th three-pointer of the game, surpassing the 27 set by the Houston Rockets against the Phoenix Suns on April 7, 2019.

Jrue Holiday had six three-pointers on the way to 24 points. Khris Middleton, who led the Bucks with 25 points, made four of five from three-point range.

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Starting guard Donte DiVincenzo’s 17 points included five three-pointers, and Brook Lopez had three treys on the way to 14 points.

Two-time reigning Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo was the only Bucks starter not to make a three-pointer, coming up empty on two attempts in a nine-point performance.

His brother Thanasis Antetokounmpo drained one three-pointer for the family on the way to five points off the bench for the Bucks, who simply steamrolled a Heat team that was without injured forward Jimmy Butler.

“Honestly, (we) just played hard,” Holiday said. “We know the Heat way and how they’re going to come out and play no matter who’s playing.

“So we just wanted to take that approach.”

It was a bounce-back win for the Bucks, who were blown out 130-110 by the Knicks in New York on Sunday.

“Last game in New York, we didn’t show what we wanted to show,” Holiday said.

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They left no doubt in this one, leading by as many as 24 points on the way to a 46-26 first-quarter lead and never let up.

The Bucks’ previous record for three-pointers in a game was 22, against the Sacramento Kings on November 4, 2018.

The most the Heat had given up before was 24.

“It looked like they had been thinking about this game for 80 days,” said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, whose team will get a chance to avenge the embarrassing loss when they host the Bucks again on Wednesday.

In other early games, Julius Randle posted a triple-double of 28 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists to lead the New York Knicks to a 95-86 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

 CLEVELAND, OHIO – DECEMBER 29: Elfrid Payton #6 of the New York Knicks shoots over Andre Drummond #3 of the Cleveland Cavaliers during the fourth quarter at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on December 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Jason Miller/Getty Images/AFP)

But Russell Westbrook’s triple-double of 21 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists — his third in as many appearances in the young season — again went for nothing as his Washington Wizards fell 115-107 to the Chicago Bulls.

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PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – DECEMBER 23: Russell Westbrook #4 of the Washington Wizards elevates for a lay up over Dwight Howard #39 of the Philadelphia 76ers during the first quarter at Wells Fargo Center on December 23, 2020 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images/AFP)

Zach LaVine led the Bulls with 23 points, and Wendell Carter Jr. added a double-double of 10 points and 12 rebounds as Chicago notched their first win of the season.

Washington, meanwhile, fell to 0-4.

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TAGS: Boston Celtics, Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, NBA, three pointers
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