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Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo out against Cavs after scary fall from Jazz game

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According to a report from Tom Withers of the Associated Press, Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo will miss Saturday’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers due to back spasms.

The injury appears to be the result of a scary fall Giannis endured while playing against the Utah Jazz Friday night.

While Antetokounmpo contributed 35 points and eight rebounds for the Bucks in a losing effort against the Jazz, the evening’s most significant play occurred in the third quarter with Giannis defending.

Rotating to the front of the basket, hoping to earn a block against Rudy Gobert, Antetokounmpo came crashing back down to the floor in a hard fall that immediately caused concern along the Bucks bench. Though he was able to remain in the game, Antetokounmpo was in obvious discomfort as he clutched his side.

As it turns out, the discomfort hasn’t gone away.

Without their two-time MVP, the Bucks will look to avoid falling back to .500 against a surprisingly competitive Cavaliers team. In Giannis’ absence, Milwaukee will likely require Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton to carry a more considerable scoring burden than they are generally required to while shifting center Brook Lopez back into the interior.

Though the big man has excelled at racing out to the corners to provide space and driving lanes, the loss of Giannis means that Lopez can revert to the dunker’s spot.

While the Bucks will be able to tread water without Giannis in the short-term, any lingering effects of the injury could prove disastrous for a franchise desperate to contend for a championship. Until he is back on the court, all of Milwaukee will be holding their breath.