The Milwaukee Bucks donned their throwback uniforms this weekend and continued their push toward the All-Star with a split in games against the Knicks and Magic.
After losses to the Bulls and Knicks, Luc and the Bucks got on track against Orlando (Getty Images).
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute and the Bucks strengthened their hold the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference by knocking off the Orlando Magic 107-98 on Saturday. It was a solid bounce back effort from 96-86 loss to the Knicks on Friday, in which they were held under 90 points for the second straight game.
Following Wednesday’s loss to the Central Division rival Bulls, the Bucks came out strong on Friday night and found their rhythm early to carry a six-point lead into halftime against the Knicks. The hot start on the road — led by forward Ersan Ilyasova’s 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting at the half — against the team with the second best record in the Eastern Conference was a good sign for Milwaukee.
But the Bucks went cold in the second half and shot just 31.7 percent from the field as the Knicks rallied to take the lead and pull away with the win. Luc contributed our points, three rebounds and an assist despite playing just over 13 minutes due to foul trouble in the losing effort.
Fortunately, Milwaukee got the chance to rebound from Friday’s loss quickly and didn’t waste the opportunity at home. The Bucks took full advantage of the shorthanded Magic who came into the game without guards Jameer Nelson and Arron Afflalo as well as forward Glen Davis and Milwaukee’s starters outscored Orlando’s 82-67, dominating the first and third quarters on the way to the win at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
With the full complement of starters against the Magic’s skeleton crew, the Bucks were able spread the ball around well with four starters scoring more than 16 points while shooting 46.7 percent from the floor as a team. Luc added eight points and grabbed five rebounds while adding a steal and an assist.
Mbah a Moute #stud
— Broderick Rogala (@broderickwayne) 2 Février 2013
The victory over Orlando tightened the Bucks to 1.5 games ahead of the Boston Celtics for the seventh seed in the East and they sit just a game behind the Atlanta Hawks for the sixth spot entering the new week.
The Bucks (25-21) open the week just 3.5 games behind the Division leading Chicago Bulls with 36 games left to play in the regular season.
To improve their position, the Bucks will have to be road warriors as they begin a two-game trip West on Tuesday night in Denver against the Nuggets. Twenty-four hours later they’ll be in Utah to take on the Jazz.
Both games are scheduled for 8 p.m. CST tip-off and each will be broadcast on Fox Sports Wisconsin.
- Tip Time: Larry Sanders Will Start vs. Knicks (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Feb. 1, 2013)
- Bucks Collapse in Second Half, Fall to Knicks (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Feb. 1, 2013)
- Friday Game Report: Bucks at Knicks (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Feb. 1, 2013)
- Ellis Leads Bucks Past Magic, 107-98 (Charlotte Observer, Feb. 2, 2013)
- Sharing is Caring (also important to a successful offense) (Bucksketball, Feb. 2, 2013)
- Bucks 107, Magic 98: Not Perfect, but We’ll Take It (Brew Hoop, Feb. 3, 2013)
- Ellis Leads Bucks Past Magic 107-98 (NBA.com, Feb. 2, 2013)
- Saturday Game Report: Bucks vs. Magic (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Feb. 2, 2013)
- Bucks Find Energy, Break Skid vs. Magic (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Feb. 2, 2013)