Giannis Antetokounmpo outdueled James Harden in more ways than one in Wednesday’s showdown.
The Bucks star absolutely drilled the Rockets star with a dodgeball-like throw in the fourth quarter while trying to pass to Malcolm Brogdon.
What’s even more impressive, the ball bounced off Harden and back to Antetokounmpo, who immediately hit Ersan Ilyasova for an open 3-pointer.
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) January 10, 2019
“Hell no, I didn’t see it coming,” Harden said after the game with a smile. “That s— hurt. I didn’t even know what happened.”
Antetokounmpo was apologetic during his postgame media availability, saying he had no intention of hitting Harden.
Giannis Antetokounmpo told James Harden “my bad” right after his 100-mph fastball beaned the Beard: “It was so hard. Like, the ball to be able to bounce from one side of the floor to the other side of the floor, that’s how you know how hard it was. It was an accident, obviously.” pic.twitter.com/x64CC6qSlW
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) January 10, 2019
“I was like, ‘Oh, my bad,'” Antetokounmpo said. “I told him, obviously when we were walking down the floor, ‘My bad.’ I didn’t mean to hit him in the head, I was trying to hit the guy in the corner. … It was pretty hard.”
Milwaukee handed Houston a 116-109 loss, snapping the Rockets’ 10-game home winning streak despite a 42-point and 11-rebound performance from Harden.
Antetokounmpo finished with 27 points and 21 rebounds for the Bucks.