Looking to finish off a win that they had to have, the Milwaukee Bucks turned to Luc Richard Mbah a Moute on Saturday night.
Luc put the Bucks on his back in the fourth quarter and recorded his second double-double of the season to pull out a 104-101 win over the Charlotte Bobcats at the Bradley Center.
Milwaukee was clinging to their lead when No. 12 took the game over late in the fourth quarter to keep the Bucks ahead of the surging Bobcats. With 4:02 remaining, Luc Richard converted a three-point play to put the Bucks up 13. He went on to score seven of his team’s final 14 points, including a perfect 5-for-5 from the free throw line, as the Bucks closed out their sixth win of the season.
Luc finished with 12 points on 3-of-7 shooting and grabbed 10 boards, including four on the offensive glass. But the most impressive stat of the night can be found at the beginning of his line as Luc Richard recorded a game and season-high 47 minutes.
In fact, No. 12, making his ninth start of the season, was only out of the game for a total of 38 seconds. It was the final seconds of the first half. Put it to the mathematical test and Luc played 98.7 percent of Saturday’s game, and may have played the full 48 if not for recording a foul prior to his exit.
Alex Boeder of Brew Hoop gave The Prince his due:
Luc Mbah a Moute – Scott Skiles again started him at small forward — and played him 47 minutes and 22 seconds out of 48 minutes. Not all of those minutes were at small forward, but most were.
And The Prince did a fine (not the « okay » kind of fine, the « quite good » kind of fine) job. Namely, he hit four clutch free throws in the final minute, including those two huge ones to extend the lead to 100-95 with 22 ticks. I’ve no idea why Luc, owner of a 60.0 % free throw average coming in, was the guy taking those two, but he made them, and he made 6-7 tonight.
In all, 12 points on seven shots and 10 boards is what we ask for.
The game was a must-win for the Bucks, who had lost their previous five games and face a tough upcoming schedule, so Luc’s ability to step up proved crucial not only to the game, but the season.
ANOTHER BIG NIGHT
Luc’s Saturday night double-double was nearly his second in three games.
On Wednesday, No. 12 was just one rebound short of doubling his pleasure. Instead he came up with 10 points and nine rebounds, including three boards on the offensive side of the ball. But the Bucks lost to the Cleveland Cavaliers, 83-81, when Mo Williams sank a game-winning jumper as time expired.
No. 12 had a solid performance, shooting 4-of-7 from the field and helped the Bucks keep it close throughout the fourth quarter. Luc actually gave the Bucks their last lead of the game with 3:47 left in the game when he drove to the hoop on a John Salmons pass to go up 79-77.
The Bucks travel to Utah tonight to take on the surging Utah Jazz.
Utah comes back-to-back wins off wins over the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers and the lengthy Jazz will be a tough assignment for the Bucks lineup.
Tip-off is at 8:00 CST and you can see all the action on FSN Wisconsin.
Charlotte Bobcats vs. Milwaukee Bucks- Play by Play (ESPN, Nov. 27, 2010)
Jennings lights up Charlotte to halt losing streak again (Brew Hoop, Nov. 27, 2010)
Cavaliers 83, Bucks 81: Mo Williams still loves buzzer beaters (Brew Hoop, Nov. 25, 2010)