Luc Answers the Call

Luc Richard Mbah a Moute was back in full effect on Saturday night as the Milwaukee Bucks hosted the Charlotte Bobcats in their home debut of the 2010-11 season.

After being inactive due to an injury in the Bucks’ first game and working his way back in limited minutes on Friday, Luc showed out on Saturday night in helping Milwaukee pick up its first win on the season, 99-88 over the Charlotte Bobcats.

No. 12 played 35 minutes after starting forward Drew Gooden got into early foul trouble and as usual The Prince made the most of his time on the floor, almost registering a double-double, with nine points and nine rebounds. Perhaps the most impressive, and still least surprising, statistic in Luc’s line was his game-high five offensive rebounds that equaled the total for the entire Bobcats team.

Milwaukee Head Coach Scott Skiles was very impressed with Luc’s performance, and his ability to step up in the clutch, as he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

« I thought he was very good,” Skiles said. “He looked like himself. He stabilized things. He comes in with his defensive presence, and he knows everything we’re trying to do. Obviously, we still have some kinks to work out because we have half a new team, but he knows everything we’re trying to do and I thought he really stabilized us tonight. »

Even after a night in which he performed so well on both the offensive and defensive sides of the court, Luc still believes he has things to improve on. More time on the floor should help him greatly, the Bucks’ forward told the Journal-Sentinel:

« When you’re out there, you have to do whatever.” Luc said. “Especially now with the bad start that we had, we needed people to go out there and help turn things around and make plays. That’s why I was out there, and I think what a lot of guys did tonight, that’s why we won.”

Luc said that defending their home court and also getting off the schnide with their first win of the season, are building blocks for the Bucks after the first week.

« It was good to win the home opener,” he said. “We felt like we didn’t play to our best ability on the road against Minnesota. We wanted to come back home and play hard and do everything we could to win the game. »

Alex Boeder of Brew Hoop seemed as excited as anyone regarding Luc’s play Saturday night:

“The defense, we know all about that, but it just doesn’t get old. A big offensive night producing a lot of points is a lot more straightforward, and is easier to understand and see. These ace defensive games from Mbah a Moute? We know his positioning, spacing, concentration, feet, and awareness make it work, but none of it is so obvious to make it routine to watch.”

The fact that Luc seems to come up with clutch offensive boards on a nightly basis isn’t a coincidence.

No. 12 knows exactly where to put himself on the floor to be successful.

At the end of the third quarter Saturday night, Luc was in a spot where he can often be found, underneath the glass waiting for a loose ball. After a teammate misfired and with just seconds left in the quarter Luc Richard dropped in a bucket off the offensive rebound to extend the Bucks’ lead to double digits.

It was just another example of how much better a healthy Luc makes Milwaukee. Coach Scott Skiles can’t wait to have his standout back at full strength and he should be back at 100 percent soon enough. Saturday night’s game was a big step, as Luc told the MJS:

« To be able to go back to back on the ankle was definitely good. A lot of progress has been made and that gives me that much more confidence, which is good. »

Coming up this week, Luc Richard and the Bucks look to extend their win streak against a tough Portland Trailblazers team. The Blazers head to Milwaukee Tonight for a 7:00 tip-off. As usual, you can catch all the action on FSN Wisconsin.