Milwaukee Bucks hand Warriors first loss of the season
Los Angeles (AFP) –
The Golden State Warriors suffered their first defeat of the season with a shocking 108-95 loss to the last-place Milwaukee Bucks, halting their season-opening win streak at 24 games.
The stunning defeat came at the end of a grueling seven-game road trip for the weary Warriors, who needed a double overtime marathon to beat the Boston Celtics on Friday and extend the streak to 28 straight regular season wins dating back to last season.
"Losing sucks even if you are 24-1," said Warriors interim head coach Luke Walton of the loss to the lowly Bucks.
The Warriors fell just five wins shy of equaling the NBA all-time record of 33 straight victories set by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1971-72 season.
"Nobody wanted to see it come to an end," said Golden State guard Stephen Curry. "Thirty three wins was within our grasp."
Golden States' win streak stands as the second longest in league history, and the longest to start a season. It has been 2 1/2 weeks since they set the record for the best start in history at 16-0.
In a strange twist of flashback fate, the Bucks were also the team that ended the Lakers' streak with a 120-104 victory on January 9, 1972.
Reigning NBA MVP Curry paced the Warriors' attack with a team high 28 points in front of a crowd of 18,700 at Harris Bradley Center arena in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Both clubs were playing the back end of consecutive Friday-Saturday contests.
But Bucks were able to battle through the fatigue better than Golden State, who were hoping to become the first NBA team to sweep a seven-game road trip.
Golden State knew it wouldn't be easy as they were coming off their most trying contest of the season, a hard-fought 124-119 win over the Celtics in Boston.
- 'Another notch in the belt' -
Forward Draymond Green said he feels like a weight has been lifted off his shoulders now that the streak is over.
"I am not happy it is over because at the end of the day what we did was pretty cool. But it is almost like a sense of relief," Green said.
"When you turn on the TV and all you see is Warriors streaking, Warriors making history. Who is going to stop them? You start to believe that.
"Through all this you get caught up and trapped inside of what is going on.
"Now we can focus on what we need to focus on."
Curry said they can be proud of their achievement, but now it is time to move on.
"Nobody wanted it to end," he said. "We wanted every night to put another notch in belt of that streak.
"But tonight it didn't go our way. We ended up with our first loss but we can appreciate what we were able to accomplish."
The Warriors shot just 40.9 percent from the field and only six-for-26 from beyond the arc.
The Bucks improved to just 10-15 on the season as they sit in last in the Central Division.
Center Greg Monroe tallied 28 points and 11 rebounds for the Bucks, who looked surprisingly fresh after losing 90-83 in Toronto on Friday.
"We wanted to come out with a lot of effort and energy," said Monroe. "We were at home, a packed house. It was a great opportunity for us."
Giannis Antetokounmpo recorded a triple-double for the Brewers, which shot as a team just a shade under 50 percent from the field and drained six-of-14 three-point attempts.
Milwaukee will have Sunday and Monday off before beginning a four-games-in-six-days trip that includes a visit to California, where the Warriors will get a chance to avenge the loss next Friday at Oracle Arena.
© 2015 AFP