Bucks 117, Nets 97: Brooklyn Falls to League-Leading Milwaukee

The Brooklyn Nets dropped their third straight game, 117-97 against the league-leading Milwaukee Bucks at Barclays Center on Saturday night.

Kyrie Irving led the Nets with 17 points, six assists and six rebounds. Taurean Prince scored 13 points and Spencer Dinwiddie had 11. Jarrett Allen grabbed 10 rebounds.

The Nets were without Joe Harris, Garrett Temple and DeAndre Jordan for the game. Rookie Nic Claxton backed up Allen at center in Jordan’s absence and scored 14 points on 7-of-12 shooting with six rebounds.

The Nets trailed by 15 at halftime.

Early threes from Irving, Prince and Dinwiddie added up to a 9-0 run and a 9-5 Brooklyn lead, with the Nets up 12-11 after another 3-pointer from Rodions Kurucs. But with the Nets down 23-22, Milwaukee closed the quarter with a 7-0 run to take a 30-22 lead into the second quarter.

There were six lead changes in the first quarter, but none in the second, as the Bucks stayed in control right into halftime.

A 9-2 Milwaukee run opened the second quarter and had the Bucks up 39-24. With the Nets within 51-42 late in the quarter, Khris Middleton hit two 3-pointers in the final minute of the half for a 57-42 Bucks lead at the break.

With an 8-3 run, Milwaukee stretched its lead to 22 points midway through the third quarter and took a 93-71 lead into the fourth quarter.