Bucks’ winning streak ends at 16 games with loss to 76ers at Fiserv Forum

The Milwaukee Bucks’ winning streak wasn’t going to last forever

The Bucks had their 16-game winning streak ended by the Philadelphia 76ers, 133-130, in a nationally televised battle between Eastern Conference powers on Saturday night at Fiserv Forum.

It was the third-longest winning streak in franchise history, trailing only the 20 games in a row won by the 1970-71 team and the 18 straight victories by the 2019-20 squad.

BOX SCORE:76ers 133, Bucks 130

The 76ers rallied from a 99-85 deficit in the fourth quarter, getting the go-ahead three-pointer by Joel Embiid in the final minute.

Grayson Allen, Bucks get hot from three-point territory in third quarter

The Bucks looked like they might pull away by getting hot from long distance in the third quarter.

First, Jrue Holiday hit a step-back triple from the right corner for an 80-71 advantage with just over 5 minutes left in the quarter. The Bucks’ next three field goals came from behind the three-point line, including two from Grayson Allen.

Allen had 20 points in the quarter, including 6 three-pointers, matching the most by any Bucks player in a quarter this season. The Bucks had a 99-85 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

The Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo drives to the basket against the 76ers' Paul Reed on Saturday.

The Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo drives to the basket against the 76ers’ Paul Reed on Saturday.

Giannis Antetokounmpo faces 76ers for first time since ladder incident

It was the first matchup between the Bucks and 76ers since the much-ballyhooed ladder incident on Nov. 18 in Philadelphia. That brouhaha was kicked up by 76ers reserve Montrezl Harrell taking away the ball from Antetokounmpo during some post-game free-throw work.

Antetokounmpo scored 13 points in the first half as the Bucks took a 59-53 lead at the break. He attacked the paint for Milwaukee’s first points and then in the waning seconds of the first half drove past former teammate P.J. Tucker for the lay-in.

The Bucks turned to Antetokounmpo’s attacking drives in the fourth quarter when the game got close.

After the 76ers rallied to tie the game at 108-108 with 6:05 remaining, Antetokounmpo converted a three-point play. He then made two free throws for a 118-114 advantage.

He missed a short look in the lane in the final minute, and then the 76ers’ Joel Embiid hit a three-pointer with 42 seconds remaining that gave Philadelphia a 127-125 lead. Antetokounmpo also was called for a travel in the final minute.

Doc Rivers thrilled with Marquette’s season

It was a basketball doubleheader at Fiserv Forum on Saturday with the Marquette Golden Eagles finishing their regular-season with a 96-94 victory over St. John’s. MU then celebrated its Big East regular-season by cutting down the nets before the court was switched over for the Bucks game.

Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers then opened his pregame press conference by stating “No. 6 Marquette won again.”

The former MU standout then said he’s watched more Golden Eagles games this season because he lives in Big East territory in Philadelphia.

Rivers, who has a close relationship with MU coach Shaka Smart, said he loves how the Golden Eagles play.

“I think every coach in the NBA wants that same style, when the ball is flying around,” Rivers said.

Smart was in the crowd during the Bucks game and was introduced on the Jumbotron in the third quarter.

Five numbers

31 Winning streaks of 15 or more games in NBA history. The Bucks have five of them.

7-2 The Bucks’ record on the first game of back-to-backs this season

7 Points for Bobby Portis in the first quarter on 3-for-3 shooting

40 Points in the fourth quarter for the Bucks

18,100 Fans at Fiserv Forum, a season high for the Bucks

Play of the game is Joel Embiid’s three-pointer

The Bucks’ defense was scrambling late in the final minute, but Embiid found himself wide open at the top of the key after a nice pass from James Harden and the 76ers star nailed a three-pointer to take the lead for good.

Video of the game is Brook Lopez blocking Joel Embiid and hitting a three

Embiid might be a MVP candidate, but Brook Lopez has a strong case for all-defensive team nod. The two massive centers clashed in the second quarter, with Lopez swatting away a layup attempt from Embiid.

Lopez’s teammate Jrue Holiday corralled the loose ball and, with Embiid slow getting back on defense, hit Lopez with a pass for a wide-open three-pointer at the top of the key. The ball got a friendly bounce from the Fiserv Forum rim before settling into the net.

Who do the Bucks play next?

It will be quick turnaround for the Bucks with a game against the Washington Wizards at 6 p.m. at Capital One Arena. In the last meeting between the teams, Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 55 points in a 123-113 victory on Jan. 3.

More:How Khris Middleton’s new mindset coming off the bench might bring added dimension for Bucks in playoffs

More:Comedian Hasan Minhaj issues a challenge to Skip Bayless after Giannis comment on ‘The Daily Show’ taken out of context

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This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Bucks lost to 76ers 133-130 in ABC Saturday primetime game at Fiserv Forum