Larry Sanders got a technical foul and the Bucks lost a practice game

OJ Mayo. Smiling. (Photo by Dan Lippitt/NBAE via Getty Images)
OJ Mayo. Smiling. (Photo by Dan Lippitt/NBAE via Getty Images)

How quickly things have turned.

A night after thrilling a very full Resch Center in Green Bay with a comeback win, the Milwaukee Bucks delivered what sounded like a sloppy, uninspiring effort in a 94-80 loss to the Detroit Pistons. As always two things to note about preseason games:

1. They mean nothing
2. Little glimpses of players are the only things to look for

That being said, I’m bummed about Larry Sanders this morning. Again, I did not watch this untelevised practice game. But I did see some tweets from the venerable Charles F. Gardner and I did not love some of the things I saw tweeted.


Already? I mean, we’re two games into the preseason and Sanders did not even start the second game. I know the excuses that’ll be made for him: “It’s better to have to turn down a guy than turn him up. He plays with passion. He’s got fire.” All those things. Those are fine, but they have limits. When a player is consistently reckless, it’s a huge burden on the team. The technical was bad enough, but picking up a foul immediately after was worse. Again, I didn’t see this game, so I’m not going to speculate that he let his emotions get the best of him on the foul, but foul trouble is a different problem that Sanders has had and when those two problems blend together, it’s a huge disaster.

Sanders played 21 minutes and picked up four fouls and a technical. That’s nearly seven fouls per 36 minutes and potentially an ejection. I don’t mean to be an early alarm sounder here, but given the history Sanders has had of late, it’s worth bracing yourself for the worst. Actually, I think that’s my new life motto: It’s Worth Bracing Yourself For the Worst.

Anyway, other players played aside from Sanders. Only Khris Middleton seemed to play well. He hit three first quarter 3-pointers and at least one person was very excited about it. I will be stunned if Middleton is not one of Milwaukee’s starting wings on opening night and throughout the season.

I’d be even more shocked if O.J. Mayo were one of Milwaukee’s starting wings on opening night or throughout the season. He struggled, but seemed optimistic when speaking to Gardner after the game:

“My ankle bothered me a little bit but I just wanted to be out there,” Mayo said. “It’s finding team chemistry and finding an opportunity to jell was more important than trying to rest anything.

“It felt good to be out there. Obviously we didn’t play like we wanted to play. We had a good first quarter and a good 2 or 3 minutes in the second quarter, and it went downhill from there.”

Anything I missed? Shout about it in the comment section.

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  1. Sigh. Sanders may very well be a lost cause. It’s unfortunate given his potential. But I’m sick of him showing up in the news for all the wrong reasons.

    • Lost cause? They’re just technical fouls, which mean very little. I don’t remember anyone crying that Rasheed Wallace was a lost cause, or Dwight Howard. Unless he does it in crucial moments of games, or the playoffs (lol) then what’s the big deal? If he wants to dish out the money, more power to him. Better than the disinterested ball players we’ve ended up with in the past decade.

      • He’s constantly losing his temper in games which leads to technical fouls and worse, in-game ejections and eventually suspensions. When he loses his temper he tends to play more reckless and pick up more common fouls as well which leads to him being planted on the bench anyways.

        Considering he’s supposed to be a focal point of this team, particularly as a defensive anchor, that IS a major issue.

        But no, this isn’t the only reason I refer to him as a potential lost cause. Look no further than his disastrous 2013-14 season, between the bar fight, suspension for substance abuse AGAIN, and of course, the on-court attitude, not to mention the documented instances of why he may very well be a locker room cancer, for why I might have some reservations about him.

        • a pathetic bucks fan

          hes not locker room cancer everyone on that team loves mad larry, he got into it with neal and monta, two guys who didnt want to be here.if you saw the game that technical and successive foul weren’t anythin to be worried about, you’re giving up on him before he even has a chance to make uup for last year

  2. I agree that this is troubling, that is Larry faltering just when one would think he would be on his best behavior. Let’s hope it was just a slip-up, but there’s more than a little cause for concern.

    Larry was able to control himself enough to have that one special season, so it’s hard to know how much of his lapses and lack of discipline on the court is a matter of him being unable or unwilling to mature.

    He has so much going for him with his contract and his talent that it’s really disconcerting to see signs of him blowing it — sad for his sake and sad for us fans.

    God bless you, Larry! Get it together, or get some help… please!!!

  3. Watched part of the second half. OJ Mayo took a couple of awful 3’s early in the shot clock on back to back possessions and looked lost on offense. He, somehow, played incredible defense for the most part and hounded KCP for 10 seconds before ripping the ball away and running a fastbreak.

    Oh, and Giannis almost tried to fight Singler.