Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) – Brandon Jennings was playing in just his seventh career game but went off for 55 points to break a record held by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and lead the Milwaukee Bucks to a 129-125 win over Golden State.
Abdul-Jabbar, then known as Lew Alcindor and who became the highest-scorer in NBA history, held the franchise record for points in a game by a rookie with 51, which he scored on February 21, 1970.
But Jennings, who didn’t even score in the first quarter, lifted his name among the greats with a virtuoso performance, sinking 21-of-34 shots, including 7-of-8 from three-point range.
He scored 29 in the third and fell just two points shy of Michael Redd’s franchise record for points in a game. Jennings was also just three points off the NBA record for points in a game by a rookie, as Wilt Chamberlain scored 58 points twice in his first year.
Just 20 years old, Jennings skipped college and played in Italy last season before entering the NBA as the 10th overall draft pick in 2009. He has jumped at the opportunity to shine on the NBA stage, as he was averaging 20.7 points entering Saturday’s game, including a 32-point game Wednesday against Denver. None of his previous contests can match his landmark performance against the Warriors, which helped the Bucks to their fourth straight win and a 5-2 record.
Andrew Bogut added 19 points and 11 rebounds for the Bucks.
Monta Ellis and Corey Maggette had 26 and 25 points, respectively, for the Warriors, who have lost two of three. Stephen Jackson added 21 points in the setback.
Though Jennings scored 29 in the third quarter, he helped deliver a victory with 16 points in the fourth, with many of them coming down the stretch in a tight contest.
As the teams traded points and the lead, Jennings drilled a three-pointer with a little more than two minutes left. Luke Ridnour followed with a layup, and Jennings’ bank shot with under 1 1/2 minutes to go gave Milwaukee a 121-115 edge.
Maggette countered with a three-point play, however, making it a one- possession contest heading to the final minute. Each team then turned the ball over once, and the Bucks ended up with the ball.
It went to Jennings, who canned his seventh three with half a minute to go for a 124-118 edge. The Warriors narrowed their deficit again, as Ellis countered with a three of his own and Maggette added a layup. Golden State then fouled Ridnour with 18.5 seconds left, and the guard sank the first.
Ridnour missed the second, and Maggette came down with the rebound. But Anthony Morrow missed a potential go-ahead three, and Jennings grabbed the ball. He was fouled and drained two free throws as Milwaukee held on for the win.
Golden State ended the first on a six-point burst to take a 30-21 lead, and Jackson scored four points in a row early in the second to expand the advantage to 36-23.
The Warriors continued to play in front, though the Bucks got within 57-49 at the break.
Then in the third, Jennings put Milwaukee in front nearly single-handedly, as he outscored the entire Golden State team. With the Bucks trailing 67-58, he scored his team’s next 16 points.
He started the personal run with a three and a layup before Ellis interrupted it with a lay-in of his own. But Jennings then connected on a three, drove for a three-point play, canned a jumper and drilled another trey, which put the Bucks ahead 74-69.
Jennings continued to hit shots, and Jodie Meeks ended the third with a three- pointer to make it a 92-83 Milwaukee lead.
But Golden State got back in the contest with a six-point burst early in the fourth. Anthony Randolph capped it with a layup to bring the Warriors within 94-91, and they eventually took a 108-107 edge on an Ellis three with about 4 1/2 minutes left.
Milwaukee made 14-of-24 of its three-point attempts overall, though just 19- of-30 foul shots…The Warriors shot 56.1 percent from the field, while sinking 25-of-28 from the line…Milwaukee held a 46-31 rebounding edge…Redd scored 57 on November 11, 2006 to set the Bucks record…Stephen Curry scored 14 off the bench for the Warriors, while Ridnour ended with 13 points for Milwaukee.