PHOENIX (AP) – Gerald Green had a season-best 24 points and a career-high five steals starting in place of the injured Eric Bledsoe and the Phoenix Suns beat the sloppy Milwaukee Bucks 116-100 Saturday night.
Channing Frye added 22 points, going 6 of 9 on 3-pointers, Goran Dragic scored 13 of his 15 in the second half and Markieff Morris added 14 for the Suns, who have won 11 of 14 but were coming off a home loss to Memphis on Thursday.
Brandon Knight had 25 points for the Bucks and O.J. Mayo scored 18 of his 20 in the second half.
Milwaukee committed a season-worst 26 turnovers, resulting in 38 Suns points. Phoenix had 11 turnovers for just seven Bucks points.
In the locker room after the game, Milwaukee’s Gary Neal and Larry Sanders got into a heated, face-to-face argument, leading Mayo to usher reporters out into the hallway. The locker room was opened about five minutes later, and Neal was still visibly upset as he left.
Bledsoe missed his second game in a row with a sprained right knee and is expected to be out for another week.
Green’s performance included a pair of breakaway windmill dunks and four 3-pointers.
Phoenix led by 20 in the second quarter and 23 in the third before Milwaukee twice cut it to seven early in the final quarter.
The Suns never trailed, breaking away from a 28-28 tie with 12 consecutive points to take a 40-28 lead on Ish Smith’s 21-footer.
Green’s first windmill dunk, followed by his 3-pointer, gave the Suns their biggest lead of the half, 58-38, 2:13 before the break. But the Bucks ended the half with a 9-2 run to cut the lead to 60-49, Knight sinking a 3-pointer with 16.9 seconds to go.
Knight’s basket made it a 61-51 game early in the third quarter, then Dragic scored nine in a 13-2 run that put Phoenix back in control, 74-53, with 7:49 left in the third quarter. But Knight scored five and Mayo sank a 3 in a 9-0 Bucks run to end the third and start the fourth, slicing the Suns’ lead to 87-80 on Mayo’s steal and dunk with 11:26 to play. Mayo’s 21-footer again made it a seven-point game at 91-84 with 8:40 to play.
Green responded with a 3, then Morris made three shots in a row, the last a fadeaway 9-footer and it was 100-84. Caron Butler’s 3 cut it to 104-92, but consecutive 3s by Frye and Green’s last windmill made it 112-92 3:11 from the end.
Phoenix improved to 20-12. The Suns didn’t win their 20th last season until Feb. 27. The Bucks, last in the Eastern Conference, have dropped 10 of 12.
NOTES: The two youngest players in the NBA, both 19, played in the game: Giannis Antetokounmpo for Milwaukee and Archie Goodwin for Phoenix. Antetokounmpo started and had three rebounds and four turnovers in 13:34. Goodwin had seven points and three rebounds in 14:57. … The Bucks, who have used 15 different starting lineups this season, had the same one for the third straight game. … Phoenix leaves Monday for a five-game road trip, beginning Tuesday night in Chicago. … Phoenix is 19-1 against Milwaukee at US Airways Center. Last season, the Bucks won to snap a 24-game losing streak in Phoenix.
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