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"I still want to be there"

But as Randle stood in the catacombs of the Fiserv Forum after Friday morning's shootaround to prepare for that night's game against the Milwaukee Bucks, he insisted he wouldn't change a thing and has no intention of jeopardizing his commitment to the... (Author: Gardener)

the Fiserv ForumSNY NBA insider Ian Begley says the Knicks are at a crossroads with Julius Randle. After his All-NBA performance last season that resulted in Randle signing a long-term extension, he hasn't been the same player this season. His inconsistent play raises questions about how the organization is getting the best out of Randle. The Knicks will need those critical answers to determine the future of the franchise. More information on Ian Begley: https://sny.tv/tags/ian-begley His show The Putback with Ian Begley appears weekly on SNY.tv, and Begley is also a regular contributor to GEICO SportsNite.

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Here's what Giannis Antetokounmpo tweeted after The Bucks beat The Knicks

The Milwaukee Bucks beat the New York Knicks in Wisconsin on Friday night. (Author: Gardener)

Giannis AntetokounmpoGiannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks defeated the New York Knicks 123-108 in Wisconsin on Friday night, and post-game All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo tweeted. The win put the Bucks 31-20 in the 51 games they have played so far this season. They're currently the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference, and after winning the NBA championship last season, they appear to be back in the mix this season. As for the Knicks, they're going in the opposite direction as they're now down 23-27 in the 50 games they've played. After being the fourth seed last season, they are in danger of missing the playoffs this season. * DEROZAN TAKES ON JORDAN ON A LIST FOR THE BULLS: DeMar DeRozan and the Chicago Bulls were on track to start the new season as the top teams in the Eastern Conference. A four-time All-Star in his first season in Chicago, DeRozan passed Hall of Famer Michael Jordan on a franchise-record list. * STEPH AND THE WARRIORS ARE ON FIRE: The Golden State Warriors haven't made the playoffs in two seasons, but that looks set to change this season. They're excited to start the season under the guidance of superstar guard Steph Curry and have one of the best records in the entire NBA.

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The New York Knicks are reportedly ready to trade these players

According to ESPN's Brian Windhorst, the New York Knicks are willing to trade veteran players like Kemba Walker, Evan Fournier and Alec Burks. (Author: Gardener)

The New York KnicksAccording to ESPN's Brian Windhorst, the New York Knicks are willing to trade some of their veteran players like Kemba Walker, Evan Fournier and Alec Burks. The clip of what Windhorst said on ESPN's NBA Today (on Thursday) can be viewed at the hyperlink above. "In discussions with teams this week, the Knicks have expressed a willingness to trade some of their veteran players," Windhorst said on Thursday's episode of NBA Today. "That includes Kemba Walker, Evan Fournier, Alec Burks, guys like that." Windhorst also addressed the reasoning as to why the Knicks would be willing to move those players. "They traded in for Cam Reddish two weeks ago and he doesn't get minutes in Tom Thibodeau's rotation," he said. The Knicks are currently the 11th seed in the Eastern Conference with a 23-27 record in 50 games. * DEROZAN TAKES ON JORDAN ON A LIST FOR THE BULLS: DeMar DeRozan and the Chicago Bulls were on track to start the new season as the top teams in the Eastern Conference. A four-time All-Star in his first season in Chicago, DeRozan passed Hall of Famer Michael Jordan on a franchise-record list. * STEPH AND THE WARRIORS ARE ON FIRE: The Golden State Warriors haven't made the playoffs in two seasons, but that looks set to change this season. They're excited to start the season under the guidance of superstar guard Steph Curry and have one of the best records in the entire NBA.

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Here's what Giannis Antetokounmpo tweeted after The Bucks beat The Knicks

The Milwaukee Bucks beat the New York Knicks in Wisconsin on Friday night. (Author: Gardener)

Giannis AntetokounmpoGiannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks defeated the New York Knicks 123-108 in Wisconsin on Friday night, and post-game All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo tweeted. The win put the Bucks 31-20 in the 51 games they have played so far this season. They're currently the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference, and after winning the NBA championship last season, they appear to be back in the mix this season. As for the Knicks, they're going in the opposite direction as they're now down 23-27 in the 50 games they've played. After being the fourth seed last season, they are in danger of missing the playoffs this season. * DEROZAN TAKES ON JORDAN ON A LIST FOR THE BULLS: DeMar DeRozan and the Chicago Bulls were on track to start the new season as the top teams in the Eastern Conference. A four-time All-Star in his first season in Chicago, DeRozan passed Hall of Famer Michael Jordan on a franchise-record list. * STEPH AND THE WARRIORS ARE ON FIRE: The Golden State Warriors haven't made the playoffs in two seasons, but that looks set to change this season. They're excited to start the season under the guidance of superstar guard Steph Curry and have one of the best records in the entire NBA.

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Blazer Ready for CJ McCollum Breakup? Brunson to Knicks?

The Dallas Mavericks need offensive help as the NBA's trade deadline nears, and Portland Trail Blazers shooting guard CJ McCollum could be their answer. (Author: Gardener)

BrunsonIn examining the NBA trading landscape, it has been difficult to pinpoint potential moves that the Dallas Mavericks could realistically make given the assets at their disposal. Dallas has some good plays, but overall they just don't seem good enough to get a foot in the door with trade talks involving bigger names like Ben Simmons. Could a player like Portland Trail Blazers shooting guard CJ McCollum be a high-end piece the Mavs can actually afford? According to a report by Marc Stein, the emergence of Anfernee Simons in January "started some of the loudest speculation yet in the Pacific Northwest that the Trail Blazers are finally ready to sever the partnership between (Damian) Lillard and CJ McCollum." The Mavs' offense was already struggling before Tim Hardaway Jr. went down with a foot injury that could sideline him for the rest of the season. While the Dallas front office's urgency to close a trade may be heightened now, if we're honest, this point should have been reached before the injury ever happened. Adding McCollum in Dallas would definitely be a step in the right direction to get there offensively. Here are two trading scenarios, one of which is a two-piece, to get McCollum in a Mavericks uniform. As Simons improves his game, one has to wonder if new Portland management will want to risk stunting that growth when Lillard eventually returns from his abdominal injury. Not only would Hardaway Jr. give the Blazers another viable bench-scoring option for a long-term deal, but with him potentially out for the rest of this regular season, the move could help Portland position itself better in this year's draft lottery to secure. Mavs Received: Mitchell Robinson, 2023 first-round pick (who was originally sent from Dallas to New York in the 2019 Porzingis trade) As we previously wrote on DallasBasketball.com, trade opportunities can sometimes arise based on how certain players are performing against certain teams. In this particular case, Porzingis Portland always seems to throw up fits, so naturally we have to wonder if the Blazers are open to swapping McCollum outright for him. Both players have injury worries, are being paid big bucks and may suit their new locations better, so why not give it a shot? Things have been very quiet on this front since last season's trade rumors that indicated the Mavs were looking to leave Porzingis. Porzingis and the Dallas front office have said all the right things to the media, but given that KP has never been the most natural line-up alongside superstar Luka Doncic, the chance to add a player like McCollum could perhaps see the trade smoke again. If the Mavs move away from Porzingis in this scenario, they would need to find more rim protection in another trade. With McCollum in Dallas, Jalen Brunson's role would be diminished, and the Mavs would likely want to trade as much as possible for him before he hits the full free agency market this summer. The New York Knicks' interest in Brunson is well documented. Many teams in the league seem to hold Brunson in high esteem, but perhaps no team thinks more of him than the Knicks, and the Mavs should look to gain an advantage there. In a scenario where McCollum is already a maverick, a second draft that sends Brunson to New York for Mitchell Robinson, as well as the 2023 election that sent Dallas to the Knicks in 2019, would be a playoff-strengthening sequence of transitions. Such a wild scenario would leave the Mavs with a starting lineup of Luka Doncic, CJ McCollum, Dorian Finney-Smith, Maxi Kleber (above Dwight Powell for spacing reasons) and Mitchell Robinson. Stay tuned to DallasBasketball.com for game coverage and all Mavs-related trade updates.

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The New York Knicks are reportedly ready to trade these players

According to ESPN's Brian Windhorst, the New York Knicks are willing to trade veteran players like Kemba Walker, Evan Fournier and Alec Burks. (Author: Gardener)

The New York KnicksAccording to ESPN's Brian Windhorst, the New York Knicks are willing to trade some of their veteran players like Kemba Walker, Evan Fournier and Alec Burks. The clip of what Windhorst said on ESPN's NBA Today (on Thursday) can be viewed at the hyperlink above. "In discussions with teams this week, the Knicks have expressed a willingness to trade some of their veteran players," Windhorst said on Thursday's episode of NBA Today. "That includes Kemba Walker, Evan Fournier, Alec Burks, guys like that." Windhorst also addressed the reasoning as to why the Knicks would be willing to move those players. "They traded in for Cam Reddish two weeks ago and he doesn't get minutes in Tom Thibodeau's rotation," he said. The Knicks are currently the 11th seed in the Eastern Conference with a 23-27 record in 50 games. * DEROZAN TAKES ON JORDAN ON A LIST FOR THE BULLS: DeMar DeRozan and the Chicago Bulls were on track to start the new season as the top teams in the Eastern Conference. A four-time All-Star in his first season in Chicago, DeRozan passed Hall of Famer Michael Jordan on a franchise-record list. * STEPH AND THE WARRIORS ARE ON FIRE: The Golden State Warriors haven't made the playoffs in two seasons, but that looks set to change this season. They're excited to start the season under the guidance of superstar guard Steph Curry and have one of the best records in the entire NBA.

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Life Is Good is better than good, romps past Knicks Go in the Pegasus World Cup

Knicks Go can no longer compete with Life Is Good at the $3M Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park. (Author: Gardener)

the Pegasus World CupHALLANDALE BEACH – Saturday was not a day for goodbyes. Just as the NFL world was pondering whether Tom Brady would retire, Saturday's Knicks Go left no doubt. No doubt he quit and no doubt he was second best in his last race. The $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational never saw a duel of speed between two horses as Life Is Good jumped to the front and never looked back and settled to a 3 1/4 victory over the Horse's probable winner of the Year Award 2021 went wild at Gulfstream Park. "I never thought I'd be so up front," said winning jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. "He was too fast and too good," said winning trainer Todd Pletcher. Trainer Brad Cox and his ownership group were hoping Knicks Go could successfully defend its Pegasus title in its final race before retiring to stud. But as the horses got to the back stretch it was obvious life was too good, leading by five lengths and showing no sign of effort after an opening quarter in 23.12. "It looked like it broke all over and then got a bit of a rebuild," said Cox. "I don't know, this horse, the winner, ran off the TV screen." Even those watching from the sidelines knew, including Pletcher. "We've had a lot of great ones," Pletcher said. Bold statement from a seven-time Eclipse-winning trainer whose credits include two Kentucky Derby wins and a dozen Breeders' Cup wins. Pletcher hopes Life Is Good's next stop can be the Dubai World Cup. "He's just a phenomenally talented horse," said Pletcher. His coach also set a decent pace on Saturday. At the start of the map, Pletcher's Colonel Liam won the $1M Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational for the second straight year. The day was also particularly significant for Ortiz, who sustained a knee injury at Gulfstream earlier this month when one of his horses caught his knee on part of the starting gate. Ortiz was supposed to be out for three to four weeks but proved to be a slightly faster healer. "This god for my health," he said. "A couple of doctors told me I couldn't do it." Life Is Good completed the 1 1/8 miles in 1:48.91, returning $3.60, $2.10 and $2.10 and raising $1.75 million. As for Cox, he knew Saturday would still be a bittersweet day. "He's been super good to us," Cox said of Knicks Go. "We're proud of him and we're happy and excited that he's retiring healthy and healthy and I look forward to training some of his babies in a couple of years. He's 6. The $500,000 Pegasus World Cup Filly and Mare Turf went to favorite Regal Glory. This article originally appeared in the Palm Beach Post: Life Is Good rages to victory over Knicks Go in Pegasus at Gulfstream

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Bred in Maryland, Knicks Go fails to catch Life Is Good in the career-crowning Pegasus World Cup Invitational

The Maryland-bred Knicks Go failed to catch the younger, faster Life Is Good and finished second in the final start of his brilliant career at Saturday's Pegasus World Cup Invitational. The race at Gulfstream Park in Florida was billed as a speed duel between Knicks Go and Life Is Good, who had won five of six career starts and would have been favorites in last year's Kentucky Derby... (Author: Gardener)

Pegasus World Cup InvitationalThe Maryland-bred Knicks Go failed to catch the younger, faster Life Is Good and finished second in the final start of his brilliant career at Saturday's Pegasus World Cup Invitational. The race at Gulfstream Park in Florida was billed as a speed duel between Knicks Go and Life Is Good, who had won five of six career starts and would have been the favorite in last year's Kentucky Derby had he not sustained an ankle injury. But Knicks Go never really joined the fight as Life Is Good broke sharply and ran off the field. "He broke, but he was a few horses quicker in the first corner," trainer Brad Cox told NBC after the race. … It's hard to beat, but he ran well and was beaten by a very good horse.” Trainer Todd Pletcher described Life Is Good as a “special horse” as talented as any he has raced in his Hall of Fame career has worked. Knicks Go is still favored to win the 2021 Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year. He would be the first Maryland bred to receive this honor since Cigar in 1996. He finished his career with 10 wins in 25 starts, including victories at the 2020 Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile, the 2021 Pegasus World Cup and the Whitney Stakes at Saratoga and the $6 million Breeders' Cup Classic. Knicks Go began life at GreenMount Farm in Glyndon, a humble breeding farm founded and run by mother-daughter duo Angie and Sabrina Moore. Now that he's finished racing, Knicks Go will be at stud at Taylor Made Farm in Kentucky.

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In the Pegasus, Life Is Good runs away from Knicks Go

Life Is Good immediately went to the top and stayed there, easily winning the $3 million Pegasus World Cup on Saturday and denying the Knicks Go for what would have been a fairytale end to his career. (Author: Gardener)

the Pegasus, Life Is Good- Life Is Good immediately went to the top and stayed there, easily winning the $3 million Pegasus World Cup on Saturday and denying Knicks Go in what would have been a fairytale end to his career. The win capped a big day for trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey Irad Ortiz Jr., who teamed up just before the main event to win the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf with Colonel Liam. Life Is Good grossed $3.60, $2.10, and $2.10. Knicks Go -- the likely Horse of the Year for 2021, having won the Pegasus and Breeders' Cup Classics, among others -- brought in $2.10 and $2.10, respectively. Stilleto Boy, a 25-1 shot behind the 4-5 co-favorites, paid $2.80 to show it. "It's been a tremendous effort," Pletcher said of Life Is Good. It was Pletcher's first Pegasus World Cup win, and after that, the seven-time Eclipse Award-winner showered praise on Life Is Good as the game's top trainer. "We've had a lot of great ones," Pletcher said. It was already a given that he would retire after that race, and second place denied him the chance to push his career earnings past $10 million. He settled into third place in the early stages, struggling all the way but never being able to scare Life Is Good. He was a much better horse than us today," said Knicks Go trainer Brad Cox. "Look, we were second best. Congratulations to Todd Pletcher, one of the best that ever lived. He has no shame in finishing second today.” Assuming he emerges from the Pegasus unworried about injury, Life Is Good is likely to expect another big-money race on his next outing. "He's unreal," Ortiz said. "He's the best horse I've sat on my entire life." Colonel Liam competed back-to-back for Pletcher and Ortiz to win the $1 million Class 1 Pegasus World Cup turf for the second straight year .Colonel Liam, the 8-5 favorite, looked at another trainee by Pletcher at Never Surprised charged from the outside of the 12-horse field for the early lead Never Surprised held them most of the time before Colonel Liam stopped alongside and eventually came out on top Colonel Liam returned $5.20, $3.60 and $3.Never surprised, at 7-2, stayed second and paid $5.20 and $4.20. "It was a great race for both horses,'' Pletcher said. "We needed everything to run exactly to plan," Pletcher said. Ortiz was emotional after winning the turf race for the third time in four years earlier this month he had a small fracture in his left knee and was originally told i.e that he might not be able to take part in the Pegasus races. "It was obviously a tough month," said Ortiz. and Todd Pletcher for letting me ride the horse." In the opening event of Grade 3, $500,000 Pegasus Filly and Mare Turf, the heavily favored Regal Glory was pushed wide by five in the early stages and had to pull out of the bottom field for the Race collect victory under jockey Jose Ortiz and for trainer Chad Brown She was 2 1/2 lengths ahead of Alms 19-1 ($11.20, $6.40) while Shifty She - who had the lead in the stretch - herself settled for third place and paid $4.80 Sweet Melania, second pick 5-1, finished last in the field of 10 contestants.

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Giannis Antetokounmpo dominates in the fourth quarter to close New York

Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 12 of his 38 points and had seven rebounds in the fourth quarter as the Bucks pulled away. (Author: Gardener)

Giannis AntetokounmpoIn a televised late tip Friday night on the Fiserv Forum, the Milwaukee Bucks won for the fourth time in five games with a 123-108 win over the New York Knicks. The game between the two teams ended after 9:15 p.m. as part of a nationally televised schedule, which marked the second time the two teams changed routines for the game. The Bucks defeated the Knicks in New York after an 11 a.m. start time on December 12. Before the game, Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer said his team got an extra hour of sleep before the shootaround and then had more time to nap during the day, maybe they were for a later start. And maybe the bonus winks helped, at least initially, but by the end of the first half and third quarter it looked like they slept a little too much as the Knicks nearly erased a 15-point deficit. Giannis Antetokounmpo woke everyone up in the fourth quarter with a rousing back pass over the head on Grayson Allen for a three-pointer with 8 minutes and 21 seconds left to put the Bucks 105-94. "Yeah, that was ridiculous," Allen said with a smile. That helped the Bucks rebuild their lead to as much as 16 before having to withstand another late Knicks rally. More: Will Milwaukee Bucks guard Jrue Holiday earn an All-Star nod after a ring and gold medal? More: The Milwaukee Bucks struggle through the 'dog days' of the NBA schedule in a contested Eastern Conference Milwaukee also won the season series with New York 3-1. The Knicks lost for the sixth time in their last seven games, 23-27. Milwaukee is 19-4 when its Big Three of Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday all play. Antetokounmpo led all scorers with 38 points, surpassing 30 points for the ninth time in January. He added 13 rebounds and five assists. Holiday had 24 points and tied a season-high with 4 three-pointers. Middleton hit 20 and added seven rebounds and four assists. Allen returned from a one-game suspension and scored 13 points on 4-of-8 shooting, including 3-for-7s from behind the three-point line. "I wouldn't say surprised, I was just waiting to hear," Allen said of the discipline the league imposed after a flagrant two-foul he committed Jan. 21 on Chicago guard Alex Caruso Bulls, had committed. "I understand the rules, a lot revolves around the result of the game, right? I'm not going to say I don't agree with that or anything. After that game, Bulls head coach Billy Donovan urged the league to watch the game and said Allen had a history of such things going back to his college days at Duke. "I understand where Coach Donovan is coming from," Allen said. He's trying to stand up for his players at an important time after a guy fell badly and was injured. So, I think everything he said came from a place of, I think it came from a point where he really wanted to do the right thing. I think more on his mind he's like I have to defend my guy right now and this is the opportunity to do that and he didn't want to let it happen so he did that.” Wesley Matthews was also back for Milwaukee after he missed two games with a bruise on his left knee, but he struggled with fouls in 13 minutes. George Hill led the Bucks reserves with seven points. The Knicks were led by Evan Fournier with 25 points while R. Julius Randle was held at nine points but he had 11 rebounds. "I think we wanted to throw a lot of different people at him, a lot of different bodies," Budenholzer said of the Knicks All-Star activity and the off-ball guys showed a lot and got some balls at digs and things like that . It takes everyone with a guy like Randle. Antetokounmpo took over in the fourth quarter after a three-pointer from Burks cut Milwaukee's lead to 93-91 as Antetokounmpo followed a Holiday basket with seven straight points before incredible assists for all three and was double-cast. "I was open again, but I didn't think he saw me," Allen said. “So I just waited there and maybe he turns over his right shoulder and finds the pass and then he just threw a pass where you would see someone fiddle around before the game or something. I mean, he does ridiculous stuff like this all the time, so I guess I'm just learning to reckon with it.” “I won't lie, in my head I thought I'd have to do this when I got it.” Middleton controlled six points after that, and his first three of the game, 6-08 up, put Milwaukee at 113-97. Much like the second quarter, where they rebounded, the Knicks capitalized on an 8-0 run to go 113-9. 105 3:58 left, but Mitchell Robinson missed two free throws and the Knicks couldn't get any closer. Antetokounmpo scored 12 points and had seven rebounds in the fourth. New York drew eight times within possession in the third quarter, but Milwaukee could always stop and score at the other end to eventually go into the fourth quarter to 93-88. The Bucks missed their first six three-pointers of the quarter until Hill hit a three-pointer with 2:04 left. Up to this point, the Bucks relied on their free-throw shooting to keep the Knicks one step ahead as they went 11-on-12 in the third. Antetokounmpo and Holiday also scored 17 points in this quarter. "They put on a couple of big runs and then luckily for us we got a stop in time to finish that run and then a big bucket to react," Allen said. It was usually a big throw or a big play on offense by one of us to somehow stop them.” A buzzer-beater from Connaughton put the Bucks a 67-63 lead into the half, leading the second half of the second quarter the Bucks saved after putting out the lights in the first 18 minutes. Milwaukee came on fire and shot 70% through the first 15 minutes of the game and 50% from behind the three-point line in the race to a 15-point Lead at 5:43 to go in the second quarter. But the Knicks meanwhile put on a 21-7 run and when Connaughton hit his three. Subscribe to our Milwaukee Bucks newsletter for updates on the team. "I think even though it's just a basket, a three-pointer, that was a big hit," Budenholzer said. I think they had 33 in the second quarter, so to bump it up to 4 and feel a little bit better. Within that hot start, Antetokounmpo and Holiday each made their first five shots (four of which were three-pointers for Holiday). ) "I just saw it go through the basket," Holiday said. "I think it's kind of like a first layup, so quick a break that I almost missed it. I just started knocking them down. I think a lot of my threesomes kinda came from the same place but I looked good and they went in. Antetokounmpo led all scorers with 17 points at the break, but he left frustrated after being called out for three personal fouls in the final, 3-42. He earned a game delay after his last foul when he threw the ball towards the Bucks -Bank took before he shot It goes across the court to Bobby Portis. The Knicks put Antetokounmpo on a tough streak as he blasted six free throws at halftime and went down when Nerlens Noel hit Antetokounmpo in the face with the inside of his elbow. Holiday had 14 chips while Middleton had 12. Allen had eight, Barrett led the Knicks with 13 and Fournier with 10. Each team took advantage of turnovers, with the Bucks scoring 12 points from 12 Knicks giveaways and the Knicks scoring 14 from eight Bucks gifts. Milwaukee missed just six shots in the first quarter to take a 39-30 lead when Antetokounmpo scored 13 points early. The Knicks were able to stay connected as they matched the Bucks' five three-pointers, which was needed as Randle failed to score. The Bucks looked like t They could completely control the game in the first half of the second quarter as Holiday hit two threes and Allen took a 50-36 lead. Middleton then scored five of his 12 first-half points in under two minutes to increase the lead to 15 before New York made its run. Randle didn't score his first points until 1:56 remained in the half, and he finished with four. Barrett and Grimes each scored eight points in the quarter. Attending All-Star games is old hat for 27-year-old two-time league MVP Antetokounmpo, having tied for most selections in franchise history with six Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. For his part, Budenholzer said if he were a fan at home he would also vote for Antetokounmpo. "He's more than special," added Budenholzer. “I think the fans appreciate him, I think the players, the people he's playing appreciate him, I think you, the media, appreciate him. To start at a young age... Becoming an All-Star six years ago or a starter and things like that and then just going on with it, the consistency, the size, we're incredibly lucky to have him. This article originally appeared in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Bucks 123, Knicks 108: Giannis Antetokounmpo Dominates Fourth Quarter to Close New York

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