Luc Richard Mbah a Moute made his return to the court this weekend and his presence helped the Bucks pick up two big wins.
After sitting out eight games to rest his right knee, Luc returned to the Bucks lineup in New York on Friday night and helped the Bucks take down the Knicks. Two nights later it was on to Miami where The Prince’s suffocating defense was a huge factor in Milwaukee’s 91-82 win over Miami.
In just his second game back from injury, Luc had the unenviable task of defending both LeBron James and Chris Bosh on certain occasions Sunday night. But No. 12 takes pride in the challenge of defending a great offensive player.
« The key to winning this game was to keep their numbers down, » Mbah a Moute said. « This team is very dangerous. »
Milwaukee trapped Miami into bad spots all night, forcing turnovers on the way to a win (Getty Images).
Luc scored just four points to go along with five rebounds in 28 minutes off the bench but his defense helped the Bucks hold Miami to one of their lowest scoring outputs this season, 82 points on 37% shooting.
« His line won’t show the impact he had on the game, » Bucks coach Scott Skiles said. « He had a huge impact on the game. »
Luc did his best work on Bosh, as Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel wrote:
“He defended both LeBron James and Chris Bosh, and his harassing style of defense in the post helped force eight turnovers by Bosh. Mbah a Moute tried to attack Bosh’s dribble and forced several miscues that way. »
Although Luc Richard didn’t start the game, Skiles decided to go with him down the stretch over rookie Jon Leuer.
« We’ve got to get Luc out there on Bosh or Ers, » Skiles said. « Luc has done a nice job on Bosh in the past. Jon is learning. One night it’s Amare Stoudemire; the next night it’s Bosh. »
The Prince had crucial fourth quarter blocks of Norris Cole and Bosh as the Bucks clung to a lead. He also knocked down his only field goal of the game with 7:12 remaining, pushing the Bucks lead to three. The bucket started an 8-2 run that put the game away.
The win followed another huge one for the Bucks on Friday night, 100-86, over the Knicks.
Luc had six points, seven rebounds and two steals in his first game back. He recorded a big steal and a bucket in the second quarter, taking the ball away from Toney Douglas on one end and finishing off a Mike Dunleavy feed on the other side.
He added his other steal and four points in the fourth when he took it away from Iman Shumpert. With the Knicks down 12 and just 2:24 remaining, Shumpert fouled Luc, sending him to the line where he made both attempts. He added a layup a few moments later for the team’s final points of the night.
But it was Luc’s defense that again told the story as he and Carlos Delfino made Carmelo Anthony take 29 shots to get 35 points. They also limited Amar’e Stoudemire to 15 points on 13 shots. The inefficient night from their two stars was New York’s downfall as they shot just 37 percent as a team.
« That’s what I do, come in here and give this team that defensive boost, » Luc said of his return to the lineup. “It feels good to get in there and get two wins in my first games back. »
Luc and the Bucks host the Atlanta Hawks tonight at the Bradley Center. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. and the game can be seen on FSN Wisconsin.
- Bucks pick up first road victory of season (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Jan. 20, 2012)
- Defense leads Bucks in surprise of Heat (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Jan. 22, 2012)
- Sunday game report: Bucks at Heat (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Jan. 20, 2012)
- Livingston stays in starting lineup (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Jan. 20, 2012)
- Jackson misses shootaround, out for Knicks game (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Jan. 20, 2012)