Williamson Leads Pelicans to 107-100 Victory Over Bucks

Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Milwaukee Bucks, NBA News
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Zion Williamson‘s assertive performance in the closing minutes, including crucial free throws, led the New Orleans Pelicans to a 107-100 win against the Milwaukee Bucks during Thursday’s NBA action.

Williamson’s strategic play and focus on taking advantage of the right opportunities came as a response to a recent loss where he felt the team could have managed the final moments better.

“If we’re going to lose certain games, we at least want to do it the right way, knowing that we got the shots we wanted,” Willamson said. “That was the emphasis tonight and we were able to get the win.”

The Pelicans maintained a lead throughout most of the match, building up to an 18-point advantage in the first half. However, the Bucks narrowed the gap to five points late in the game, reminiscent of the Pelicans’ recent loss to Oklahoma City. This time, Williamson’s aggression and precision from the free-throw line in the final minutes ensured a New Orleans victory.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks Updates

CJ McCollum and Jonas Valanciunas significantly contributed to the win, with McCollum scoring 25 points and Valanciunas securing a double-double. Trey Murphy III also made notable contributions, motivated by a personal challenge to impress his father in attendance.

“Effort – that was really it,” Murphy said. “My dad was in the crowd and had a mad look on his face, so I tried to make him a little more happy by rebounding the ball.”

Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 35 points and 14 rebounds, displaying an unwavering commitment to attacking the basket, which Williamson acknowledged with respect. Damian Lillard and Malik Beasley also had impactful performances for Milwaukee, but the team couldn’t overcome the Pelicans’ physicality and aggression.

“Man, I thought I attacked the basket,” Williamson said. “He has a high motor. I’ve got to give him his respect on that, and he’s always on the attack.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks Updates

Lillard attributed the loss to the Pelicans’ more assertive playstyle, which he felt was rightly rewarded by the officials and energized by the home crowd.

“I just thought they played more physical. They were the more aggressive team,” Lillard said. “Usually the more aggressive team gets rewarded by the whistle. The game favors that team more. I think they had that going, the crowd got into it. They were able to get their hands on the ball, they chased offensive rebounds, they got extra opportunities. They just played a better game than us.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks Updates

The victory showcased the Pelicans’ determination to overcome recent setbacks and adjust their strategy in critical game moments. As both teams noted, it also emphasized the importance of physicality and aggression in securing wins.

The Pelicans are set to host Boston next, while the Bucks look to regroup and bounce back in their upcoming games.

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