Chris Boucher scored a career-high 25 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to help the Toronto Raptors defeat the Milwaukee Bucks 114-106 on Tuesday morning.
Though the meeting featured the top two teams in the Eastern Conference standings, both teams were missing key players.
Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, the reigning MVP, missed the game after undergoing oral surgery. Bucks coach Mike Budehnolzer said Monday it was uncertain whether Antetokounmpo would play in the team’s final two seeding games Tuesday against the Washington Wizards and Thursday against the Memphis Grizzlies.
For Toronto, Kyle Lowry sat out with a sore lower back, Serge Ibaka missed the game with a bruised right knee and Fred Van Vleet was out with a hyperextended right knee.
In another NBA game on the day, Devin Booker scored 35 points, and the Phoenix Suns rolled past the short-handed Oklahoma City Thunder128-101 on Monday to improve to 6-0 in the restart and improve their playoff chances.
The Suns have surged in the Western Conference standings. They entered the day just 1 1/2 games behind eighth-place Memphis and a game behind ninth-place Portland in the race to qualify for a spot in the play-in series.
“We haven’t accomplished anything,” Phoenix coach Monty Williams said. “That may sound like coach-speak, but we dug ourselves a hole with our record. We scrapped all year long and won some games, but it’s been an uphill battle.”
Williams appreciates the position the Suns are in.
“We’ve done a good job of getting to this point,” he said. “No one knew we were going to be here, but we’re here and we’re thankful for that.”