If you are interested in the Milwaukee Bucks’ young players, this game was for you

Milwaukee Bucks 93 Final

Recap | Box Score

109 Phoenix Suns
Shaun Livingston, PG 28 MIN | 6-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 12 PTS | +7

Livingston did a whole bunch of good, big backup point guard things. He posted up well. He got to his spot inside the paint and made the short jump shot he goes to with regularity. He isn’t quite the creator on offense I hoped he’d be, but he keeps the ball moving well enough.

Jon Leuer, F 22 MIN | 4-9 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 11 PTS | +4

Blessed with minutes thanks to the blowout nature of the game, Leuer took advantage and tossed up nine shots, making four of them. His jumper hasn’t been as accurate over the past couple games, but he’s still taking good shots and playing intelligent basketball.

Larry Sanders, C 25 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 3 AST | 8 PTS | +6

He’s nearly completely ineffective as an isolation offensive player at this point, but he typically isn’t going to have those chances anyway. He tried to take advantage of his minutes and role as essentially a veteran in the Bucks lineup late in the game with more looks on offense, and it proved more comical than effective. He did all of the other little things very well tonight.

Darington Hobson, F 17 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 4 PTS | +8

He scored the first four points of his career tonight and some of his ball handling and passing skills we’ve heard so much about were on display. That was fun. But he’s kind of redundant with Jackson, Livingston, Dunleavy and Delfino in front of him. Milwaukee would be better served with another shooter in Hobson’s place.

Tobias Harris, F 23 MIN | 4-8 FG | 7-10 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 15 PTS | +11

Harris received extended minutes for the first time in his career and performed as well as anyone could have expected. He made two nice cuts off the ball, once resulting in free throws and once in a dunk. He lacks the explosion that makes star players, but getting 10 free throws is always a good thing. It was a treat to see him score with relative ease.

Four Things We Saw

  1. The Bucks starters? Each was nearly invisible in their own way. When Nash wasn’t destroying him on offense, Brandon Jennings was doing little on offense. Drew Gooden wasn’t making the shots he’s hit the last few games, but was still playing the mediocre game that most forwards could play at a much lower price. The Suns were making a ton of shots, but the Bucks rotation on defense wasn’t what it typically is.Some of that is because Steve Nash is so talented, but he’s still just one man.
  2. Milwaukee’s young players all showed some value tonight. Milwaukee won’t get many extended looks at their young players with veterans blocking the way across the board, so it was at least fun to see that they are all capable in their own way. Even if none has star level explosion or shooting skill.
  3. Milwaukee has now lost 24 straight games in Phoenix, which owes to the Suns dominance in the 90s and most of the 2000s and the Bucks general awfulness through the same period. More important than those 24 straight losses is the five straight losses Milwaukee’s dealing with right now. They’ve been much better at home over the past few years, but this trip was a sobering reminder of how far the Bucks are from being anything other than playoff fodder.
  4. Dan Sinclair put it best on Twitter: Without Bogut, the Bucks are bad enough to get a good pick. With Bogut, they’re good enough to get a bad pick. Uh oh.Uh oh indeed.

Categories: Recaps

I watch the Milwaukee Bucks often and write about what I see…

5 Comments

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  2. My thoughts on the 5 game road trip.

    -S-Jax does not seem to be hitting any of his shots on a regular basis and doesn’t seem to be playing stellar defense.

    -Jennings seemed like he was trying to control the number and quality of his shots but when Bogut left, there was no one else to go to points wise.

    -Delfino doesn’t appear to have his shot and I like him better when he drives the ball at least half the time so that when he takes his 3s they are not as contested.

    -Ersan just seems lost on offense. He doesn’t seem to want to take his outside shots but has not been able to get to the rim outside of fast break or second chance points.

    -Sanders has played well on defense and rebounding. Needs to develop some low post moves and gain strength. Unless he does he is just a poor man’s Danny G with some shot blocking.

    -Livingston appears to be able to get to his spots in the paint for turn around jumpers and seems to have decent vision but may need to take more command if he is the one running the offense from a bench unit.

    -Leuer seems to bring effort, defense and toughness to the 4 spot. But on offense looks like he is usually just trying to get out of everyone else’s way. Could be a result from lack of training camp.

    -Gooden seems to get his stats but is not in position or cannot block out to prevent offensive rebounds by the other team. Plays away from the basket.

    -Luc Richard hasn’t played much be perhaps when he returns he along with Bogut could being the toughness back to the lineup. Also when he did play he showed he had worked on his outside jumper.

    It still seems like the team still needs a strong PF to compliment Bogut on defense and offense. If their winning percentage continues for the rest of the year, which I doubt, I think Jared Sullinger would be a good pick.

    • @Wombat02 Some astute observations Wombat! I agree enthusiastically on Livingston – the more control he takes the better.

      I’d say if this team does continue to slide, I’m not sure they will now that Bogut has returned, any star type player has to be the pick rather than someone like Sullinger who could fill a need but maybe not with a ton of upside.

  3. My thoughts on the 5 game road trip.

    -S-Jax does not seem to be hitting any of his shots on a regular basis and doesn’t seem to be playing stellar defense.

    -Jennings seemed like he was trying to reign taking to many shots but when Bogut left there was no one else to get some points.

    -Delfino doesn’t appear to have his shot and I like him better when he drives the ball at least half the time so that when he takes his 3s they are not as contested.

    -Ersan just seems lost on offense. He doesn’t seem to want to take his outside shots but has not been able to get to the rim outside of fast break or second chance points.

    -Sanders has played well on defense and rebounding. Needs to develop some low post moves and gain strength. Unless he does he is just a poor man’s Danny G with some shot blocking.

    -Livingston appears to be able to get to his spots in the paint for turn around jumpers and seems to have decent vision but may need to take more command if he is the one running the offense from a bench unit.

    -Leuer seems to bring effort, defense and toughness to the 4 spot. But on offense looks like he is usually just trying to get out of everyone else’s way. Could be a result from lack of training camp.

    -Gooden seems to get his stats but is not in position or cannot block out to prevent offensive rebounds by the other team. Plays away from the basket.

    -Luc Richard hasn’t played much be perhaps when he returns he along with Bogut could being the toughness back to the lineup. Also when he did play he showed he had worked on his outside jumper.

    It still seems like the team still needs a strong PF to compliment Bogut on defense and offense. If their winning percentage continues for the rest of the year, which I doubt, I think Jared Sullinger would be a good pick.

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