Bucks, at 52-9 so far, have reached some rare NBA air

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Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer reacts to a call during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

It’s reasonable to think Milwaukee is not going to win all 21 of its remaining games, which means not all is lost for the Golden State Warriors this season.

They’ll still be the only team in NBA history to win 73 games.

The Warriors were a record 73-9 in the 2015-16 season, and the Bucks fell to 52-9 with their loss in Miami on Monday night. But there’s still a chance Milwaukee could be able to make a case as the most dominant team in league history in one regard — margin of victory.

This season’s Bucks are outscoring teams by 12.26 points per game. That’s on pace to be second-best in NBA history, just a smidge behind the mark of 12.28 set by the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers — a team with a Hall of Fame coach in Bill Sharman, four Hall of Fame players in Wilt Chamberlain, Gail Goodrich, Elgin Baylor and Jerry West, and a player who would become a Hall of Fame coach in Pat Riley.

And the Bucks are in that stratosphere.

“We’ve still got a lot more basketball to play,” guard Wesley Matthews said. “And we know where we’re at and where we want to be. It’s a pretty special thing to be where we’re at in the standings.”

Matthews then offered a sentence that should send shudders across the rest of the NBA: “There’s a lot of room for improvement and growth.”

The way the Bucks are going, they’ll have the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference race sewn up by the last week of March and probably home-court advantage for the entirety of the NBA playoffs wrapped up not long afterward. And yet they’re still focused on finding ways to get better.