Giannis Antetokounmpo leads Milwaukee Bucks to win in first game after coach Adrian Griffin sacked

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Image caption: Only Joel Embiid and Luka Doncic are averaging more points per game this season than Giannis Antetokounmpo

Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 35 points to lead the Milwaukee Bucks to victory in their first game since dismissing head coach Adrian Griffin.

Antetokounmpo had his seventh triple-double of the season, racking up 18 rebounds and 10 assists as the Bucks beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 126-116.

Griffin was sacked on Tuesday despite a 30-13 record – the second-best in the NBA.

The Bucks are set to appoint Doc Rivers, external as Griffin’s successor.

Griffin succeeded Mike Budenholzer in June after the Bucks, the 2021 NBA champions, were dumped out of the first round of last season’s play-offs.

The Bucks made a blockbuster trade for Damian Lillard in September, adding the star point guard to a roster that includes Antetokounmpo, a two-time Most Valuable Player.

Rivers was sacked by the Philadelphia 76ers in May with the team having lost in the Conference semi-finals in each of his three seasons in charge.

In Wednesday’s other NBA games, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander posted 32 points and 10 assists in three quarters as the Oklahoma City Thunder won 140-114 at the San Antonio Spurs.

Victor Wembanyama, last year’s number-one draft pick, led the Spurs with 24 points and 12 rebounds.

Thunder now have a 31-13 record, along with the Bucks and the Minnesota Timberwolves, who won 118-107 at the Washington Wizards.

Anthony Edwards scored 38 points for the Timberwolves, while Karl-Anthony Towns added 15 of his 27 points in the third quarter.

Meanwhile, the Phoenix Suns trailed by 16 points in the second quarter before outscoring the Dallas Mavericks 43-20 in the third, in which Devin Booker scored 22 of his 46 points.

The Suns went on to claim their seventh straight win – 132-109 – while Luka Doncic led hosts Dallas with 34 points.

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