Bucks beat Celtics, end 11-game road skid
Boston, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - O.J. Mayo led seven Bucks in double figures with 24 points and Milwaukee ended an 11-game road losing streak with a 110-101 win over the Boston Celtics on Friday.
Ersan Ilyasova scored 13 of his 17 points during the third quarter, Khris Middleton had 13 points and seven rebounds and Giannis Antetokounmpo and Zaza Pachulia each netted 11 for the Bucks, who won their first road game since Feb. 2 against Toronto.
Isaiah Thomas finished with 23 points and six assists, while Avery Bradley and Jonas Jerebko each supplied 17 points for the Celtics, who dropped a half-game behind idle Miami for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
"I didn't think we were able to keep up with them defensively, pretty much all night after the first six minutes," Boston head coach Brad Stevens said.
In the third quarter, Ilyasova took over as he dropped nine points during a 12-0 burst that gave the Bucks a 67-56 advantage. Boston went nearly four minutes without a point during the stretch and trailed 86-75 heading into the fourth.
The Celtics pulled within four after Thomas made a pair of layups around a Jae Crowder trey, but Michael Carter-Williams' 3-pointer moments later helped restore the Bucks' lead to nine points.
Milwaukee led by as much as 11 down the stretch.
"Each game is really key and big for us," said Carter-Williams. "We're really building. I'm glad to be a part of this team."
Thomas scored the final five points of the first quarter to give the Celtics a 25-21 lead.
Kelly Olynyk kicked off a 10-0 Boston swing with a driving layup, Jerebko made a pair of layups and Tyler Zeller's two free throws pushed the lead to 45-37 with 4:17 left in the second quarter.
The Bucks briefly went in front thanks to Mayo's eight points during an 11-2 surge, but Bradley countered with a 3-pointer and Brandon Bass dunked. Mayo's turnaround fadeaway shot pulled Milwaukee within 52-50 at halftime.
Celtics forward Jared Sullinger played for the first time since Feb. 11. He was initially ruled out for the remainder of the season after breaking a bone in his left foot ... The Bucks have won four of their last five games in Boston ... The two teams will both wrap up their regular season on April 15 in Milwaukee.