No streaking allowed: Cavaliers 93 — Bucks 78

Screen shot 2014-01-24 at 11.09.43 PM
Kyrie Irving got the best of the storied Raduljica/Irving showdown. (Photo: Twitter/@Bucks)
Milwaukee Bucks 78 Recap | Box Score 93 Cleveland Cavaliers Screen shot 2014-01-24 at 11.13.28 PM
Ersan Ilyasova, PF Shot Chart 22 MIN | 2-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | -10T

he box score doesn’t always tell the whole story, but in Ersan’s case for this game, it kind of does. As a small forward, his main objective is to space the floor and shoot, and he made 2 of 10 shots. He didn’t contribute much else.

Ekpe Udoh, PF Shot Chart 12 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -3

He left the game in the first half with a sprained left ankle and did not return.

John Henson, C Shot Chart 25 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 4 TO | 8 PTS | -19

The four turnovers put a damper on things.  His box scores always look a little better than his actual performances.  The Bucks would be a better team if he found his Inner Varejao.

Brandon Knight, PG Shot Chart 23 MIN | 4-12 FG | 0-1 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | -18

In the second quarter he had two assists to John Henson that made him look very much like a point guard, and he almost had another than Henson fumbled into a turnover. But the rest of the game was forgettable or worse. The Cavs had the best two point guards in this particular game: Kyrie Irving and Jarrett Jack.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, SG Shot Chart 26 MIN | 3-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 3 TO | 10 PTS | -1

He was the Bucks’ leading rebounder. And it’s still strange to see opposing big men shy away from shooting when the Bucks’ starting shooting guard is in their vicinity. But it’s not hard to see why: in addition to challenging shots in the paint, he even snuffed out an Anderson Varejao jumper. In fact, the 2 blocks seems like a vast undercount. Maybe the official scorers weren’t paying attention in garbage time when Carmelo crept up on 60 points.

He drives baseline a lot and looks to pass in a lot of those situations, often after jumping. For a lot of guys, it would be a risky move, but Giannis has the reach and vision to pull it off. Well, maybe he does. Certainly being a threat to score in those situations helps his case at least.

Khris Middleton, PF Shot Chart 28 MIN | 5-7 FG | 0-1 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 13 PTS | 0

He parlayed a strong showing against Detroit into another decent shooting night.

Caron Butler, SF Shot Chart 17 MIN | 1-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -10

Crash. Back to Earth we go. There’s just so little movement in his game. Perhaps he’s tired.

On offense, he doesn’t move away from the ball enough. On defense, he sags in the paint like a rim protector that he isn’t. The numbers on the season prove it. The only Buck with less movement is Zaza Pachulia, who obviously fulfills a much different role.

Miroslav Raduljica, C Shot Chart 16 MIN | 1-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 4 PTS | +3

Didn’t get into the game until the second half; when he did get in, he scored 4 quick points, After that outburst, though, there wasn’t much to see but a few well-delivered fouls.

Screen shot 2014-01-24 at 11.17.04 PM Larry Sanders, C Shot Chart 21 MIN | 3-5 FG | 1-2 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 0 TO | 7 PTS | -10

In the first half, he came off the bench springy and largely in rhythm to help the Bucks with 5 quick points and some activity in the paint, even if Tyler Zeller stonewalled one of his dunk attempts.

Screen shot 2014-01-24 at 11.15.13 PM Nate Wolters, PG Shot Chart 9 MIN | 2-4 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | +5

He got in for garbage time, so it’s hard to draw any real conclusions. At least he got in.

Luke Ridnour, PG Shot Chart 19 MIN | 1-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 0 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -10

If his wife is a kind person, she’ll delete this one from the DVR. He got zapped when he tried to defend Kyrie Irving. He countered on the other end … with an airball. And then, when his teammates set him up for a fast break layup, Tyler Zeller swooped in for a massive chasedown block.

O.J. Mayo, SG Shot Chart 22 MIN | 3-6 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | -2

Why does he get unfairly lumped in with Neal and Butler? Is it the money? The ‘veteran’ status? I mean, he’s not a busybody by any definition, but he makes solid decisions, shoots the ball well, and bumps his man around a bit on defense. 6 assists was twice as many as any other Buck.

Larry Drew

It’s hard to say supportive things here if he thinks that Ersan Ilyasova can work as a small forward.

Two Things We Saw

  1. With Udoh out for the second half, John Henson and Larry Sanders got a long stretch of play together. In 7:42 of time with the big men together, the Bucks were outscored 18-9.
  2. Anthony Bennett is terrible. I’m not one to normally subscribe to moral victories, but the Bucks get one simply for ending up with Antetokounmpo from the 2013 Draft instead of Bennett, who finished the game 0-4 FG with 3 fouls and a turnover in just over 5 minutes of garbage time.

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  1. I always enjoy reading the Bucksketball postgame grades but I do have one question: Why does Larry Drew always seem to get an absurdly high grade? His awful and frequent shifts in the rotation and his refusal to play his best players the most minutes costs us a ton of games; or at the very least it robs us of being competitive in most games. Just my 2 cents.

  2. Bummer! After watching most of the first quarter live, I was looking forward to the rest on DVD — but 78 points?!? Plus, after Miroslav did so well last game, we didn’t even try him on Anderson Varejao in the first half?
    Then I see that Tobias went for 28 points and 20 boards — and that his 4 assists were more than any of our point guards. Plus, Kendall Marshall of the disregarded D-League had 14 assists to go along with 19 points on 5-7 from deep.
    Point being: This team is such a mess that one wonders if a starting-five of top lottery picks would make a difference. I continue to be stunned at the patience being extended to our front office, and shudder at the thought of their next move (still wondering, for example, if it’s true that they really wanted Josh and/or J.R. Smith).
    My ideas seem about as popular as a big, black, slushy puddle at a Bradley Center pedestrian crossing; and I’m open to other ones, with the following concerns, respectfully: I don’t think Nate is ready to be a major factor at point guard; I don’t think John is ready to be a feature on offense. Also, although it would be nice to sprinkle in some of our veterans with our young guys, the vets mostly come across as various combinations of inconsistent/incompetent/uninspired/insipid — perhaps adding outright selfish — although I’ll grant that playing for this team could be hard on anybody.
    As much as I hope we get a top-three pick this June, I think waiting around for the lottery is a really lousy strategy. Look at the lottery-laden Cavs, with Kyrie Irving as a starting all-star, still scuffling post-LeBron, still shaky after all these years.

  3. I wish the Greek Freak Alerts Twitter account still told me when Giannis was in the game. He’s the only reason I’d watch (caught a few minutes tonight, but usually I just read these so I don’t have to endure watching the joke that is this basketball franchise currently)

  4. Save the B for Drew I think your grades are right on. Nice to see Mayo have a pretty good game, not sure what happened with Knight after the 1st, he was getting to the rim with ease.

  5. Pingback: Giannis Antetokounmpo falls and tweaks his back : Bucksketball – A Better Milwaukee Bucks Blog

  6. Did anyone notice Paschke read the wrong promo TWICE? The graphic had a Bucks dancer and a Coors light and he read a promo for family night! Ah, that was the only thing entertaining about this game. That and Nate Wolters almost posterizing Anthony Bennett… Too bad he got fouled, that would’ve been his low point in his career, if his career could get any lower.

  7. Two problems I have.

    1. As others have mentioned, Drew getting a B seems a bit high. Now I’m not really complaining with the final result: I believe these losses can only contribute to the Bucks having a brighter future sooner. But Drew and even Van Exel last night always refer to the same thing: lack of energy. He’s had half a season. If he can’t get these guys to play with any sort of urgency, he needs to be fired, period.

    2. As much as it pains me to say it, Udoh should not have been giving an inconclusive grade. One rebound in 12 minutes of action is unacceptable at his position. You have to be able to contribute in some way on the court, and he still has been unable to do that consistently. And he’s not some major defensive stopper where he should be getting minutes over Henson or Miroslav, the former who can rebound, score and block shots, the latter probably our best overall post player.