Bucks’ Khris Middleton makes emergency trip to dentist after getting popped in face

Bucks’ Khris Middleton suffers painful injury in loss to the Knicks.

Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton has missed a bunch of games in the 2023-24 NBA regular season due to injuries. On Sunday, against the New York Knicks at home, Middleton suffered yet another issue, this time he needed an emergency visit with a dentist.

Khris Middleton suffers mouth injury in loss to Knicks

Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton (22) and head coach Doc Rivers look on during the second quarter against the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Reggie Hildred-USA TODAY Sports
During the second quarter of the Bucks-Knicks game, Middleton got inadvertently hit in the face by New York guard Donte DiVincenzo. His mouth bled after the contact, forcing him to exit the game. Middleton was not able to return to the contest, with Milwaukee head coach Doc Rivers revealing after the game that the former Texas A&M Aggies star went to the dentist immediately.

“Khris was great to begin to the game; he was absolutely fantastic,” Rivers told reporters following the Bucks’ 122-109 loss to New York (h/t Eric Nehm and Shams Charania of The Athletic).

“You just feel bad for him. The guy can’t catch a break. I mean, what are the odds you go into a game, ‘OK, tonight, it will be my tooth gets knocked out.’

“He’s having one of those seasons right now, but that’s OK because it can all turn for him. I thought he came with great spirit tonight, too, so just tough luck,“ Rivers added.

Before he left, Middleton, who inked a three-year deal worth $93 million with the Bucks during the 2023 offseason, scored just five points on 2/4 shooting from the field and had four rebounds and two assists in 13 minutes of action. He could have helped the Bucks avoid yet another disappointing loss, as Milwaukee struggled to stave off the Knicks in the second half where Milwaukee got outscored, 72-48.

The early departure of Middleton from the Knicks game also took away an opportunity for Milwaukee to have him, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Damian Lillard get more time together on the floor and improve their on-court chemistry for the looming 2024 NBA Playoffs. Since Rivers took over as the Bucks’ head coach, those three stars have started together just eight times.

Antetkounmpo led the Bucks versus the Knicks with 28 points while Lillard added 23.

As additional information, the Knicks game was just the fourth time over the last 29 Bucks outings that the triumvirate of Antetokounmpo, Lillard, and Middleton had been available.

So far in the 2023-24 NBA season, Middleton is averaging 15.0 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 5.2 assists through 52 games, while shooting 49.0 percent from the field and 38.0 percent from behind the arc.

Bucks continue to struggle as 2024NBA Playoffs draw near

The loss to the Knicks was the Bucks’ fourth in a row and further put their chances of locking up the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference in jeopardy. The Orlando Magic are right behind them at No. 3 with a 46-32 record — just a game behind the 47-31 ledge of the Bucks.

It is also not about to get much easier for Middleton and the Bucks, as all their remaining four games in the regular season will be against playoff-bound teams. On Tuesday, the Bucks will play the Boston Celtics, owners of the best record in the entire league, at home before squaring off against the Magic, also in Cream City, on Wednesday. Milwaukee’s final two games of the regular season will both be on the road versus the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday and opposite the Magic on Sunday.

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