Bucksketball Podcast

Insert a new cold pun, this one about playing poorly: Warriors 101 – Bucks 80

| January 7, 2014

Category: Recaps

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Leest Mode. Like Beast Mode, but David Lee doing it. (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

Leest Mode. Like Beast Mode, but David Lee doing it. (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

Golden State Warriors 101 Final
Recap | Box Score
80 Milwaukee Bucks
Ersan Ilyasova, PF Shot Chart 31 MIN | 6-15 FG | 6-8 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 20 PTS | -18

He missed his last 20 3-point attempts heading into Tuesday’s game so for him, it must have felt pretty good to see a few go down. The problems with Ilyasova continued to be the problems with Ilysaova, as he wasn’t great on the glass and he was a part of a front court that had no answer for David Lee. Also he fades away constantly and often puts up horrifically weak shots.

Larry Sanders, C Shot Chart 30 MIN | 2-10 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | -11

Failed to adequately defend the rim or earn his paycheck. HAHAHA. Really, he wasn’t much of a rebounder and lost most battles he engaged in with Andrew Bogut. Bogut suckered him into a few jump shots, which was clever by the Aussie. Sanders shouldn’t be shooting jump shots or be asked to create offense. Milwaukee’s pick and roll offense was completely non-existent, which is probably partly on Sanders and partly a credit to Bogut.

Luke Ridnour, PG Shot Chart 26 MIN | 2-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | -25

Steph Curry was a bad matchup for him.

Brandon Knight, PG Shot Chart 36 MIN | 8-15 FG | 2-2 FT | 0 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 18 PTS | -7

Knight continues to attack, though it didn’t lead to much for anyone else Tuesday night. He’s been about the only semi-bright spot over the past month and Tuesday was no different.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, SG Shot Chart 24 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 5 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | -22

Get the ball and create stuff, Giannis. You’re one of the only hopes this team has right now creatively.

Khris Middleton, PF Shot Chart 31 MIN | 4-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | -7

He finally saw some minutes again and had stretches where he looked like Milwaukee’s only offensive threat. I’m always unclear if he needs to be more assertive or if more needs to be called to get the ball in his hands while he’s on the court, but given how poor Milwaukee’s offense was on Tuesday, it was certainly a crime that he didn’t get more than seven shots.

Since his main function is off the ball, I think his lack of opportunities speaks to the Bucks not knowing what they want to do on offense and a poor job of keeping the ball moving from strong to weak side.

Ekpe Udoh, PF Shot Chart 16 MIN | 0-4 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 1 PTS | -9

At one point, Ekpe grabbed an offensive board, which was encouraging … until he missed the wide open layup that followed it. That was just depressing. Sometimes he was an active rebounder, but almost all the time he was out there, it was tough not to wonder if his time would have been better used on Miroslav Raduljica.

Caron Butler, SF Shot Chart 17 MIN | 1-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 2 PTS | -3

If he’s standing in his living room and someone tosses him his remote, I wonder if he would immediately throw it towards the TV. Or if someone asks him to take out the garbage, if he pulls it out of the can and tries to throw it outside without opening the door. He loves to shoot quickly or wait a long time and then shoot. Either way, he likes to shoot jump shots, likely because he can’t get to the rim anymore.

Miroslav Raduljica, C Shot Chart 2 MIN | 2-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | -1

He made a beautiful hop step move led to two points. Fun.

O.J. Mayo, SG Shot Chart 25 MIN | 5-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 13 PTS | -1

Word trickled through to me that, yet again, the visiting announcers wondered if Mayo was out of shape. He actually played well enough that I’m surprised this came up. As has been the case all year, Mayo shot the three well and that reflected well in his overall numbers. At this point, he’s almost as reliant on the 3-point shot as Ilyasova.

Gary Neal, SG Shot Chart DNP COACH’S DECISION MIN | FG | FT | REB | AST | STL | BLK | TO | PTS |

Not only did he not play, but the team is reportedly looking to trade him. Safe to say the organization and Larry Drew have sided with Larry Sanders in the great Sanders v. Neal Dispute of 2014.

Larry Drew

Everything is not working. Drew said after the game he met with everyone on the team yesterday to clarify each player’s role. That did little to close the talent gap between these two teams. Milwaukee would have needed a heroic effort from a passion and intensity standpoint to compete with the Warriors for four quarters, but they gave more of a heroine effort.

Three Things We Saw

  1. Lee and Bogut combined for 30 points and 30 rebounds. It was impressive to watch Lee so easily finish shot after shot inside the paint. He did an especially great job of taking advantage of mismatches. When he felt a Luke Ridnour or Giannis on him, he quickly demanded the ball and attacked without wasting any time or energy.
  2. The Warriors, even without playing all that well, look so harmonious on offense for long stretches. Curry and Thompson combined to make just 11-36 FGs and Golden State still won by 21 points. If those two were hitting, this would have been a massacre, possibly as much of one as I predicted.
  3. It’s -2 degrees outside right now. Something about the Bucks being colder would go here if it weren’t too cold for me to want to come up with something.

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About the Author ()

Jeremy Schmidt writes the Milwaukee Bucks blog Bucksketball. He founded it in January of 2009 because he hated his job. It’s like basketball, but with Bucks instead of basket. I know ... I’m sorry. He might come off as a bit negative, but I'm really not so bad. He just wants the Bucks to succeed, so he points out areas where they are coming up short. Someone has got to do it and he's ornery and opinionated enough to take on that task. He isn't sure if this should be in third person or not. Contact him at Jeremy@Bucksketball.com if you must use e-mail.

Comments (12)

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  1. dipsydoo toyou says:

    Defining role to each player…just yesterday?
    Maybe package Neal and Coach Drew,get whatever ya can for them.
    Clearly,…lame duck coach. Players either CAN’T OR WON’T put it all on the court for Coach Drew. No amount of talking or screaming or hand holding will change it…ever!
    Time for BUCKS to part ways with Coach, do we really want to see MORE of this?? Coach can’t apologize to city every night…that just won’t cut it

  2. Brandon says:

    You just have to think about it this way guys. Larry Drew is counting down the days until the draft. The organization doesn’t want to say that they are tanking when clearly something is up. Drew can only apologize because what else can he say? Hopefully we can get a 2nd Round draft pick for Neal and not some “win now” player, and just wait until next season to be a top tier team in the NBA. Just look at the bright young talent the Bucks currently have and add a top 2 draft pick. Go Bucks Go

  3. brandon says:

    I really get confused sometimes what Larry Drew is thinking. Where is Miroslav? Hes been so productive lately and he should give him more minutes when Sanders clearly isn’t playing well. Just look at the body types for some of these players, Miroslav CLEARLY matches up with both Bogut AND Lee and probably would’ve had more of an impact on the defensive end than Sanders also. Put Sanders on Speights in this game due to him not being productive and you might have been able to get something out of him.

    • Daren says:

      When we look at the Coaching jobs being done in Charlotte, Boston and Phoenix, all teams with rebuilding/tanking rosters and ROOKIE COACHES, it’s easy to see how ineffective Larry Drew is.

      I’d love to hear Jeremy’s thoughts on Drew.

      I’m mildly pleased that this team is so terrible, we’re almost assured a Top 5 pick. But the cost is going to be very high: this team is very accustomed to losing. And losing night after night after night after night does very little to foster the right culture.

      So before we all high-five ourselves for lucking into the top of the Lottery, don’t look past the sizeable toll these ~65 losses will take on their psyches.

    • Daren says:

      When we look at the Coaching jobs being done in Charlotte, Boston and Phoenix, all teams with rebuilding/tanking rosters and ROOKIE COACHES, it’s easy to see how ineffective Larry Drew is.

      I’d love to hear Jeremy’s thoughts on Drew.

      I’m mildly pleased that this team is so terrible, we’re almost assured a Top 5 pick. But the cost is going to be very high: this team is very accustomed to losing. And losing night after night after night after night does very little to foster the right culture.

      So before we all high-five ourselves for lucking into the top of the Lottery, don’t look past the sizeable toll these ~65 losses will take on their psyches.

  4. DukeH says:

    Boy did I get a kick out of Larry Drew angrily calling a time out in the 4th with lineup of Ridnour/Mayo/Butler/Udoh as if he didn’t realize that is the worst lineup he could possibly put out there.

    Play Wolters and Miroslav ffs. If this season wasn’t already a steaming turd, Drew would need to be fired but might as well let him do his thing… just play the damn rookies.

  5. matt says:

    brilliance Mr Hammond, sheer brilliance! you put together a team that can’t win, even when relatively healthy……. annnnnnnnnd you finally pulled the wool over ole man kohl’s eyes and convinced him this team would be competitive. ninja Hammond as ninja GM of the year!

    • aValpo says:

      BUCKS WIN: ANGER! 8 SEED! BUCKS LOSE: ANGER! WE SUCK!

      • Daren says:

        Not true, aValpo.

        Bo Ryan deals with a lack of Top 100 talent every year. He deals with roster turnover Every Year. He deals with major injuries (Gasser blew is ACL at the beginning of the season) when there’s no logical, fully-capable substitute.

        But he has built a SYSTEM. A Culture. He is a consistent man who has clear expectations.

        You might argue coaching in college is different. OK.

        Then how about Jeff Hornacek, who has a tanked roster. He has a SYSTEM. He has set ROLES. His teams are playing HARD.

        I want to see a SYSTEM in place. I can handle losing if I see progress..progress on an team and individual level. I see NO PROGRESS in 34 games. I don’t see a system. I don’t see an identity. I don’t see togetherness. THIS Is why I’m frustrated about sucking .

  6. Chris Greenlee says:

    I’m in agreement with most here that the rotations are questionable – but I do like that Drew is teaching the guys regularly and calling timeouts at teachable moments.

    I was at this game and want your thoughts on Giannis running our offense in the future. Brandon Knight drives with his head down watching his own dribble, while Giannis pushes the ball off a rebound with his head up looking for others and at the defense.

    A few times he drove and set up Ilyasova and Sanders – but they usually missed the shots.

    I think we could use Knight and not run the offense through him – he could be a decent spot up shooter or slasher, but doesn’t have the vision to be our primary ball handler.

    • Daren says:

      I agree with your assessment of Knight, Greenlee. And people who know a billion times more about basketball than I do, agree. Knight would make a great combo guard, sixth-man. A la Eric Bledsoe, E.Gordon, Tyreke, etc.

      I saw an interview with Steve Nash, who was in front of a monitor and asked asked to critique Knight’s game. Nash said straight up: most of what Knight lacks—vision, instinct, court awareness, anticipation– cannot REALLY be taught at this point in his professional development. Knight can be taught mechanical things like spacing, the timing/spacing of an effective P&R etc. But he’ll never be a PG who runs an offense efficiently. He’s spent the vast majority of his basketball life as a scorer because he has great athleticism and has a good, deep shooting stroke.

      An interesting question then: is Knight being pigeon-holed as a PG by Hammond, who loudly proclaimed him as such? Or is this Drew’s making?

      • Chris Greenlee says:

        Daren, thanks for the insight. Nash is my favorite player of all time, so when he speaks about playing PG – I listen.

        I speculate it is both Hammond and Drew, just figuring out if Knight can improve. Drew did wonders with Teague in Atlanta and wins don’t matter as much this year, so why not let him try.

        I do like that Giannis has natural vision, because it gives us more reason to draft the best player available and not to be swayed because we “need” a PG. I like the thought of adding Wiggins and simply letting Giannis run plays or putting Wolters in to facilitate next year.