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Preview: Injuries to stars leave Bucks shorthanded for their clash with slumping Thunder

Milwaukee hopes to rebound from their first defeat of the season as they face off against a Thunder squad that has lost three straight, but will be without the star-power of Antetokounmpo, Holiday, and Middleton


The Milwaukee Bucks will be severely short handed for their matchup with the Oklahoma City Thunder after Giannis Antetokounmpo (knee) and Jrue Holiday (ankle) were ruled out for the contest. This will be the second contest between the two sides after Milwaukee overcame Antetokounmpo's absence to defeat Oklahoma City, 108-94 on November 5th, led by Brook Lopez (25 points) and Holiday (13 assists). This time around, the Bucks will be without their four-time All Defensive team point guard, and will be forced to look elsewhere for offensive creation and defensive stability against a Thunder team led by 24-year-old guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander who is averaging 30.8 points per game so far this season.


THREE THINGS TO WATCH FOR:

1. Who will step up for the Bucks offensively? Their top three scorers from last season will be watching from the sideline. Can Lopez improve upon his season-best 25-point performance from last week?


2. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. The Thunder's young star has had a stellar start to the season, and will no longer be faced with the challenge of being guarded by Holiday. Will Milwaukee be able to contain him?


3. Milwaukee dominated the glass against Oklahoma City last week, outrebounding the Thunder 55-38, led by Bobby Portis' 21 rebounds. What changes will Thunder head coach Mark Daigneault make to give his team a stronger foothold in the rebounding department?


INJURIES:

Thunder: Chet Holmgren: out for season (foot), Aleksej Pokusevski: out (shoulder).


Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo (knee), Jrue Holiday (ankle), Khris Middleton: out (wrist), Pat Connaughton: out (calf), A.J. Green: out (nose), Joe Ingles: out (knee).



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