Nomentum: Cavaliers 92 – Bucks 82

Cleveland Cavaliers 94 FinalRecap | Box Score 82 Milwaukee Bucks
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, PF 24 MIN | 1-7 FG | 2-3 FT | 5 REB | 4 AST | 4 PTS | -12

One night removed from a sterling 20 point effort in Boston, Mbah a Moute struggled badly. He legitimately missed the rim on more than one look at the rim and looked out of sorts, tired, whatever you want to call it. On consecutive possessions with Kyrie Irving guarding him in the third quarter, Moute posted up and passed when Tyler Zeller came on the double. Both times, his pass went directly to a Cavalier defender.

Larry Sanders, C 30 MIN | 0-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 12 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -20

12 rebounds and five blocks are good numbers. Sanders didn’t really get much of a chance to do anything on offense, as most of his work there relies on catching and dunking. Milwaukee’s guards didn’t do a great job of laying the ball off at the rim off for him. On the occasions he tried to create offense off the dribble, he was a mess.

Monta Ellis, PG 39 MIN | 15-27 FG | 5-6 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 37 PTS | -8

His 37 points were a season high for a Bucks player and he was very good about getting to the basket – 16 of his 27 shots were in the paint. Simply put, he made a number of shots that he doesn’t always make in the paint. That would explain the shooting percentage. He was all the Bucks had going for most of the game, but he only scored 2 points in the fourth quarter. As he went, so did the Bucks.

Brandon Jennings, PG 38 MIN | 3-13 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 7 PTS | -13

At some point, Ellis just took over all ball handling and shooting duties and it’s not like Jennings was locking anyone up on defense either. Brutal night.

Ekpe Udoh, PF 18 MIN | 1-4 FG | 1-2 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 3 PTS | -4

Udoh does great little things, but he does big, huge giant things really poorly. When he shoots, whether it’s by the hoop, from the elbow or wherever, I’m almost always shocked when it goes in. He had a very good stretch in the third quarter, but his absence of offense was painful in this game.

Ersan Ilyasova, SF 20 MIN | 2-6 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 6 PTS | +4

Ugh.

Mike Dunleavy, SF 29 MIN | 3-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 2 REB | 4 AST | 8 PTS | -11

Milwaukee could use him to get hot for a long stretch.

Doron Lamb, SG 11 MIN | 2-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 4 PTS | +2

Lamb more or less just runs around when he’s on the court. He’s in a really unfortunate spot, having to play point guard. He has little feel for it and it limits his ability to spot up and be able to catch and shoot. Almost all of his shots seem to come off the dribble and that’s not a recipe for success.

Samuel Dalembert, C DNP COACH’S DECISION MIN | FG | FT | REB | AST | PTS |

He still is at games, if you’re wondering.

Three Things We Saw

  1. Milwaukee was playing its fourth game in five nights for the first time all season and it looked like it. The Bucks had very little energy until the bench was cleared with four minutes to go. But beyond that, they played terrible too. Luke Walton out-played nearly everyone on the team, so that’s an idea of how this thing went. When Kyrie Irving was out for the first seven minutes of the second quarter, the Cavs went up 12. WITHOUT IRVING!
  2. Milwaukee’s made a habit of not playing especially well against bad teams, even though they’ve come out of those games with wins more often than not. I’m not sure if its a preparation issue, an assumption of victory or what. Whatever it is, they need to address that, because this isn’t a team that can skate by on talent.
  3. If this game isn’t a sign that momentum is pretty tough to carry over from one game to another, I’m not sure what is. Even in the Celtics game, Boston made a huge run in the final 30 seconds and dramatically took the game to overtime before fading again. It’s hard to even have momentum in a game, much less from one game to the next. I do believe there are times when momentum can be a factor, but I think it takes more than one or two games or plays in a game for that to be the case.

Categories: Recaps

Jeremy Schmidt writes the Milwaukee Bucks blog Bucksketball. He founded it in…

14 Comments

  1. worst game of the season. i can only imagine that it looked as bad as Ted called it! have to win those ones!!

  2. Id like to think that fatigue played a factor in the game, Skiles has been using basically the same 9 rotation players for 4 games in 5 nights coming off an OT game where 4 of the 5 starters played 40+ minutes and alot of guys are a little banged up right now so to come away from Indy, Boston, Memphis, and Cleveland 2-2 in 5 nights isn’t so bad

    Now they get some much needed rest for some tough games coming up against Brooklyn and Miami bucks are at home at least so I think they’ll split those matchups but following game next Sunday at Detroit I think could be a problem. Good news is that Beno should be back by next wednesday for the game against the Spurs maybe even sooner if we are lucky. Happy Holidays folks :)

    • Agree. These guys just ran out of gas. When you play games like this past week it not only takes a physical toll, but a mental toll also. Bad passes, missed free throws and air balls… oh my! Too bad. Looked like they had a pretty good crowd at game. Ouch.

      It was Ellis night to shine. He sure put on a show for the home crowd.

  3. I think something big has happened behind the scenes. Looks like money issues. Here’s what my sources tell me: Skiles went to management to say they are not playing for me. They responded with, we got surprising offers from other teams, we’d like you to stay on and help. No details were given, and Skiles couldn’t believe them. Skiles gets back into the locker room to say nothing to players. No prep, strategy, nothing. He thought, what’s the use with these guys. “They’re probably better without me, for all I know.” Then said players went out played so as not to become hurt from exertion. My same source said to me that she overheard players commenting, Milwaukee seems unstable, and that my health and income may lie elsewhere.

    To all the many players who read me because, lets face it, they have a lot of down time to kill: I wouldn’t care who was my coach, or who didn’t like me. I would risk straining something for two hours on the court. Just for kicks. I would try to play consistent, because when I look back on things, I would like to be proud of what I stood for. Again, I wouldn’t care which team I played for, or nothing…just the eight or so minutes I get to run, including time outs.

    Sorry Scott, I too did not think this team would tire so easily.

    • No offense, but where are you getting this information? Trust me, I could believe every word of this cuz it sounds like typical Skiles dramarama, just curious where this is coming from…?

      I highly doubt Skiles will will be back next season regardless of what happens, i think he”s “auditioning” for jobs next year with this season, Herb Kohl doesn’t pay people to buy them out and not to coach or play and I think there’s probably some resentment for that I’m sure he would have rather just not coached I mean dudnt he sell his house last year…?

      • I dont believe Scott Skiles in his life has ever uttered the words “They’re probably better without me” He’s a great X’s and O’s coach and he knows more about the game of basketball than probably any of us ever will, but he has a serious ego problem and he doesn’t seem to manage egos very well and that is his biggest downfall as a coach in my opinion. I remember hearing the story of when Brandon Jennings first met Scott Skiles, the Bucks were interviewing him before the draft and this was part of the conversation he and Brandon had.

        Skiles: Do you know who holds the NBA single game assists record?

        Jenings: I dont know…John Stockton maybe?

        Skiles: Me

        another Skiles story I’ve heard is when he was with the Wizards and Chris Webber was traded to them and Webber wanted to wear #4 but Skiles had #4 Scott Skiles was starting PG floor general and the most experienced player on the roster before the season started that year and he told Chris Webber he could have his jersey number for 100,000 dollars. This is not really something you do as a leader and it isnt exactly going to help build team chemistry.

        I really like Scott Skiles and I think he was a good coach for the Bucks to have 3 years ago, but now I think he is a bit cancerous for the team and is hindering their young players development and I’d honestly rather see them finish out the season with Jim Boylan running the team

        • My dream coach for the future is Kelvin Sampson, players really respected him. They need a players coach.

          • Good call I forgot he was on the staff a few years ago, that would be a great fit. I think that Kohl could get him for a reasonable price as well

        • Your stories are non-sense, Skiles isn’t the type to brag about his accomplishments. He pokes fun at himself. He doesn’t have a problem dealing with egos. The Bucks have middle of the road talent and are achieving slightly above middle of the road results so I dont know how anyone can put any blame on Skiles. Its just ridiculous. We should know we are lucky to have him after Stotts, Porter, and all those other guys that I can’t even remember their names right now.

          • Never once mentioned that I thought he was bragging I dont even consider that story with Brandon Jennings bragging, I believe in my opinion that it was a subtle thing to say to keep Jennings in line and remind him that Scott Skiles was no bum in the league and that if Brandon were to become a member of the Milwaukee Bucks that Skiles runs the show.
            The event involving Chris Webber isn’t bragging either but I believe it does speak to Scott Skiles character and EGO.

            As Ive said b4 I think Skiles is a good coach and he can turn a young team around by instilling a defensive mindset in a team and have some short term success which he’s done everywhere he’s been.

            However, one of the reasons in my opinion I belive he has never advanced further than the 2nd round of the NBA playoffs and never will is that he is not tolerant of his players challenging his authority in any way shape or form (there have been several accounts of him clashing with players throughout his coaching career) He is a no nonsense guy and this is known throughout the NBA.

            I just dont know how you can say that he doesn’t have a problem dealing with egos when last year it was well documented that Stephen Jackson and Skiles clashed constantly. There were issues with Skiles and Maggette even though as a Buck Maggette posted good numbers yet Skiles still would not play him as often as he should have because he did not like the way Corey played defense same can be said of Charlie Villanueva a few years before. Even this year Dalembert shows up late for a game and has barely played since that happened….Those things all speak to Scott Skiles attitude and EGO.

            These are all factual and documented and I would like to think these events are recent enough where those of us who follow the Bucks as closely as I imagine the people who are regulars to this website do are not far from our minds…so when you say “He doesn’t have a problem dealing with egos” I am not sure how you can believe that, however you are entitled to your own opinion. Merry Christmas :)

  4. Scott Skiles team are so predictable unpredictable, starting one group in the beginning, rotation chaotic, benching all starters, trusting the bench, not trusting the bench and benching the bench. The sad part about this is he’s been doing this for 4 years. I would coach this team for half the money and screw up just as good as Skiles…

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