Bucksketball Podcast

All these homecomings: Bucks – Hawks Preview

| March 13, 2014

Category: Game Previews

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Throwback Thursday! I know, I hate me too. (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

Throwback Thursday! I know, I hate me too. (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

What to Watch For: Bucks

Some players are simply beloved in a certain city, no matter where they played before or have played since. Zaza Pachulia is one such player. Atlanta still loves him. It’s probably a good thing for them, then, that he’s worked his way into the Bucks’ starting lineup, giving the city plenty of chances to cheer on their favorite ex-Hawk. Larry Drew will also be returning to Atlanta for the first time since joining the Bucks. I’m sure he’d love to come in and get a win against his former employer, but it’s likely he’ll have to settle for a good showing instead.

What to Watch For: Hawks

At 12 games under .500, the Hawks are incredibly still hanging on to the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. You’ll probably recognize it, because that’s where the Bucks were hanging around for the last several years. Despite an impressive series of injuries, the Hawks are still fending off the Detroit Pistons for the honor of facing the Indiana Pacers or Miami Heat in the first round of the playoffs this year. Fending off may be a bit strong for a description of what the Hawks have been doing lately though. Atlanta is a sub-Bucks level 2-14 over its past 16 games. Yikes.

In addition, we’ll likely get to see the first game that Jeff Teague plays against the Bucks after signing an offer sheet in restricted free agency this summer. He missed the first meeting on January 25 with an injury but will likely play in this matchup and has played a huge role in the Hawks’ league-leading 25.3 assists per game. Oh, what could have been.

Logistics

Time – 6:30 p.m. CST

TV – Fox Sports Wisconsin

Radio – 620 WTMJ

Injury Report

Bucks: Ersan Ilyasova (ankle; questionable), Ekpe Udoh (knee; questionable)

Hawks: Jeff Teague (ear; questionable)

Projected Lineups

Bucks: 

PG Nate Wolters

SG Brandon Knight

SF Khris Middleton

PF John Henson

Zaza Pachulia

Hawks:

PG Jeff Teague

SG Kyle Korver

SF DeMarre Carroll

PF Elton Brand

Pero Antic

Choose the form of the Destroyer: Paul Millsap

(Photo by Allen Einstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

(Photo by Allen Einstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

One of the rare players to emerge from the crapshoot of the second round and become an All-Star, Millsap has also become a leader for the Hawks since Al Horford sustained a season-ending pectoral injury. In his seventh year, Millsap is putting up a career-best 17.6 points to go with 8.2 rebounds and showcasing himself as a shooting threat with a respectable 36.5 3PT% on the year. That range will test the defensive abilities of whomever the Bucks place up against him; if Kevin Love’s performance on Tuesday evening was any indication, they’ll need to improve in that aspect to keep Millsap in check.

Prediction: Hawks 102 – Bucks 92

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About the Author ()

Mitch has been a fan of the Bucks since the days of Big Dog, Ray Ray, and Sammy C. He's abnormally optimistic about the team even through the rough times and spends far too much time on the Trade Machine trying to make things better. He's 6'0" with a 5'11" wingspan, negligible vertical, and sees himself as more of a distributor than a scorer. Find him on Twitter @mitchvomhof

Comments (3)

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  1. canadabucks says:

    Serious question-Is anyone upset that we didn’t get Teague? I do have a feeling he’ll be available this Summer.

    • Mitch Vomhof says:

      I am. I was all in on the Teague Train when he signed that offer sheet. That said, not sure if the Bucks should pursue him this summer based on what has transpired this season.

    • Sfisch says:

      I was big on Jeff Teague, too, last summer, in my quest for a point guard for the Bucks. I’d be sincerely interested to learn what Mitch means when he says the Bucks’ interest in Teague might be different based on what has transpired this season.
      It might be that Teague will be a lot more expensive after his success this season, in which case it might be good to talk about which players might be the next up-and-coming point guards (but are more attainable because less heralded).