MILWAUKEE (NBA.com exclusive) -- Brandon Jennings will have a hard time topping himself after Saturday night.
The Milwaukee Bucks' rookie point guard was unstoppable in the second half on his way to an unbelievable 55-point performance that put his name among some of the league's greats.
When Jennings was finished, the Bucks had scraped out a thrilling 129-125 victory over the Golden State Warriors at the Bradley Center.
"I hate to say that was 'impressive,'" Bucks coach Scott Skiles said, figuring the word wasn't superlative enough. "I don't know exactly what to say."
Then again, words may not do Jennings' performance justice.
-- He scored all of his 55 points in the final three quarters after going scoreless in the opening period, with 29 of them coming in the third quarter when he outscored the entire Golden State team, 29-26.
-- He broke the Bucks' rookie scoring record of 51 set by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (then Lew Alcindor) on Feb. 21, 1970 in a game against Seattle SuperSonics that was played in Portland, Ore.
-- He fell just two points short of the franchise record set by Michael Redd almost exactly three years earlier (Nov. 11, 2006) against Utah.
--- He fell just three points short of the league record for points by a rookie set twice in 1960 by Wilt Chamberlain.
More important to him, though, he led the Bucks (5-2) to their fourth-straight victory, and on a night where they seemed all but dead in the first half.
"Holy smokes," Warriors coach Don Nelson said. "I think that's probably the best rookie performance I've ever witnessed in thirty-some years of coaching. We tried to handle him every possible way, really. He had quite a game."
Jennings missed his only three shots in five first-quarter minutes before Skiles removed him in favor of Luke Ridnour. Jennings scored 10 second-quarter points on 4-for-10 shooting, but the Bucks trailed, 57-49, and were a dismal 18 for 51 (35.3%) while allowing the Warriors to shoot 56.4% (22 for 39).
When Mikki Moore (6 for 6, 13 points) opened the second half with a dunk and the Bucks missed their first shot, it seemed more of the same was in store.
From there the Bucks made their next 14 shots, with Jennings making nine of them. Jennings scored 16 straight points for the Bucks and all the points in an 11-0 run that turned a 69-63 deficit into a 74-69 lead. He made his first 12 shots in the quarter, including four 3-pointers, before finally missing a 3-pointer in the closing seconds of the period.
"The Warriors kept going under the screens in the first half and I wasn't taking advantage of it," Jennings said. "In the second half, I was like, 'If they're going to keep going under the screens, I'm going to shoot it until it starts going into the basket.'
Luckily I hit the first two, then it seemed like the rim kept getting bigger and bigger, and I couldn't miss."
Jennings also contributed five rebounds and five, including a lob that Andrew Bogut (19 points, 11 rebounds) slammed home in the third quarter.
Jennings then followed up with 16 fourth-quarter points. His 3-pointer with 2:14 left gave the Bucks the lead for good at 117-115 and started a 7-0 run that he capped with a banked-in jumper to make it 121-115 with 1:22 left. He added his seventh 3-pointer with 34.3 seconds left and then closed his huge night with two free throws with 10.3 seconds left as the Bucks had to hold off the high-powered Warriors offense.
Monta Ellis led Golden State (3-6) with 26, Corey Maggette added 25 off the bench and Stephen Jackson had 21.
The Warriors also suffered a potentially big blow when forward Kelenna Azubuike suffered a patellar tendon injury in his left knee in the opening minutes. Azubuike entered the game averaging 15.6 points per game. He'll have further tests to determine the severity.
Jennings, who scored 32 points in a 108-102 victory over Denver on Wednesday, played the final 36 minutes without a breather.
"If we would have gotten up by 10 or 12 or 14, maybe I could have bought him a couple of minutes at the end of the third or something like that," Skiles said. "But I wouldn't have wanted to throw him out of rhythm at that point."
More impressive to Skiles was that Jennings did his scoring while never leaving the team structure.
"It's hard to say this when he gets 29 points in a quarter, but it's not greedy," Skiles said. "He's open, he's knocking down shots. He hit three or four in a row and yet they came off and helped and he pitched it to Charlie Bell in the corner.
"He's still playing basketball out there. He's not out there searching for his own. He's trying to help us win the game."
And he's definitely succeeding.