|Ersan Ilyasova, SF 35 MIN | 7-17 FG | 2-2 FT | 12 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 18 PTS | +4
Another terrific game from Ersan. He makes a big difference in the Bucks offense when he’s more than just a kick-out and move the ball option. If he’s catching and really aggressively looking for his shot, he’s a difference maker. Plus he’s been getting on the offensive glass more lately – five of his 12 rebounds were offensive Saturday night.
|Larry Sanders, C 30 MIN | 7-9 FG | 2-2 FT | 11 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 1 TO | 16 PTS | 0
Run to front of rim. Tip in shot. Dunk shot. That’s where he made his living on Saturday and it’s where he’s been all season. Effective as ever. Golden State is an interesting team for him to defend, as they don’t attack the rim with the same relentlessness as some other teams, but he was very effective in defending post-up situations against David Lee.
|Monta Ellis, PG 38 MIN | 7-20 FG | 5-6 FT | 4 REB | 4 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 4 TO | 20 PTS | +9
Very streaky game from a very streaky player. Ellis started out 1-for-8, then made 50% of his shots the rest of the way. His three with under a minute to play sealed the game for the Bucks, even though it’s one of the last shots anyone would want the Bucks to end up with in such an important situation.
|Brandon Jennings, PG 38 MIN | 6-15 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 7 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 20 PTS | +1
One shot in the first half. Coach Jim Boylan said he was looking to get everyone else involved, possibly to a fault. Curiously enough, he only had three assists. Jennings can’t just move the ball, he needs to be aggressive with his shot-selection. When he is, the rest of his game, the steals, the assists, the rebounds, all seem to come along. His third quarter was something special: 17 points and all five of his threes.
|Mike Dunleavy, SF 17 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 11 PTS | +8
After a rough effort in Cleveland, it was to be expected that the real Mike Dunleavy would return. He and Udrih were a big part of a very strong start to the second quarter that kept Milwaukee alive while Jennings and Ellis were figuring things out.
|Samuel Dalembert, C 19 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | +7
Boylan went to Dalembert when Larry Sanders was called for two fouls in the first and got some production from his little used center. Against a smallish Warriors team, Dalembert was effective as a rebounder and back line defender in the instances when the Warriors did penetrate.
He went with a three guard lineup down the stretch that worked well. The Warriors don’t have much of a shot-blocker and they don’t have much size, so having three ball-handlers isn’t as difficult against them as it would be against other teams. He seemed to have a great feel for when to make subs all night Saturday. He got Sanders back in the game late and stuck with Udrih – both choices worked well.
Two Things We Saw
- The Warriors certainly had some chances to grab hold of the game, but it seemed like they missed a ton of open shots in the fourth quarter, Klay Thompson and David Lee especially. Lee had about five shots rim out – he’s a difficult big to defend, even for the nimble Sanders. But Larry continues to impress with his post defense.
- I compared Monta hitting a three to seal a win to a child getting dessert when he didn’t do his homework. Long term, Monta taking big shots like that isn’t a great strategy, but it’s one of the only ones the Bucks have. Yes, it worked for them on Saturday, but I’m not sure anyone should feel real comfortable about Monta taking huge shots in the playoffs.