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Bucks steady progress shines rout Nuggets

Bucks' Doc Rivers praises team's defensive improvement in win over Nuggets, as Milwaukee holds opponents to under 100 points.

When Doc Rivers made his coaching debut for the Milwaukee Bucks on January 29th, he was pleased with the team's defensive effort despite a loss to the Denver Nuggets. Fast forward two weeks, and the Bucks secured a 112-95 victory over the defending champions, marking their second consecutive win and the first time they held an opponent under 100 points in the regular season since November 2021.

Following the game, Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo credited the team's unity and Coach Doc's high standards for their recent success. Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 36 points and 18 rebounds, further solidifying his place in NBA history with his remarkable performance.

Despite the Nuggets' Nikola Jokic's impressive 29 points, 12 rebounds, and 8 assists, the absence of key players due to injuries hindered their ability to secure a win. Both Jamal Murray and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope did not play in the second half, impacting the Nuggets' performance.

Rivers, who has been focused on improving the team's defensive principles since taking on the coaching role, was encouraged by the progress made in the recent games. The Bucks' defensive efforts have significantly improved, with opponents being held to an average of 89.5 points in their back-to-back wins, a stark contrast to their previous record.

Rivers emphasized the coaching staff's dedication to working with the team on defense, estimating that about 70% of their available time has been dedicated to this aspect. The team's accountability, communication, and overall identity have been key focal points, with Rivers and the coaching staff challenging the players to elevate their performance.

As the Bucks continue to build on their recent successes, the team's defensive improvements under Coach Doc Rivers have been a driving force in their recent victories. The team's unity and commitment to their defensive principles have been instrumental in their recent achievements, setting a strong foundation for future games.

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