Game 66: Bucks/Clippers

"Monta Ellis at the scorer's table, Baron likely done..."

2009/2010 NBA Season

Lac_medium


Mil_2_medium
21-44 (18-15 home)
vs.
36-29 (13-20 away)
March 17, 2010
Staples Center
9:30 PM
Radio: WTMJ AM 620 TV: FSN Wisconsin, ESPN
Probable starters:
Baron Davis
PG Brandon Jennings
Eric Gordon
SG Charlie Bell
Rasual Butler
SF John Salmons
Drew Gooden
PF Luc Mbah a Moute
Chris Kaman
C Andrew Bogut

(26th) 103.3 - OFFENSE - 104.5 (23rd)
(22nd) 109.7 - DEFENSE - 102.5 (2nd)
(19th) 92.4 - PACE - 92.5 (16th)

Coverage

Clips Nation / L.A. Times / ClipperBlog

Update: Carlos Delfino will miss the game due to a sprained ankle.  Charles Gardner reports Charlie Bell will start in his place.  Delfino played through the injury for much of the second half on Sunday but was in a walking boot this morning. Thankfully it doesn't sound like a serious injury and expect to see lots of Jerry Stackhouse, himself coming off a minor injury.

"He's only wearing the boot for precautionary reasons.  More than likely, in a playoff game he would play tonight. We want to err on the side of caution. He's got a couple things going on in there, but he's still a little bit sore. We didn't want to push it tonight."

Three.
The Clippers shot 5-25 (.200) on three pointers in their 108-100 loss to the Hornets on Monday. The starting backcourt of Baron Davis (0-3) and Eric Gordon (0-7) combined to shoot 0-10 from long range. Gordon (.366) isn't typically bad from outside, but Davis (.284) really needs to stop it with the threes. He's attempting 4.0 per game, making 1.1. As a team, the Clips are pretty bad from beyond the arc, ranking 27th in the NBA at 33.5 %.

The Bucks are second in the NBA allowing just 5.3 threes per game, so we'll see.

Brandon and Baron.
Jennings fared very, very well against superstar and supersized Deron Williams last week. Now Brandon Jennings returns home tonight, where he will face another literally and figuratively big point guard matchup. The 63" and 215 pound Baron Davis scored 18 points and dished out a season-high 17 assists in Monday's loss, the team's eighth loss in a row.

Whose turn?
I mentioned this in the recap of the Pacers game: The Bucks have had a different leading scorer in five straight games (all wins).

@ Washington: Delfino (and Bogut) 19
vs Cleveland: Jennings 25
vs Boston: Bogut 25
vs Utah: Salmons 24
vs Indiana: Stackhouse 20

NBA > NCAA.
The NCAA tournament starts tomorrow, well, technically it started last night with the play-in game. Including that one, there were 65 teams for 64 total games. Coincidentally, the Bucks have played exactly 65 games so far.

Some people like to say this tourney is it. Would you trade watching the first 65 Bucks games for the NCAA tournament? Oh, my.

So ridiculous.
Kelly Dwyer, writing Behind the Boxscore (a daily must-read), was not too fond of the Clips' effort in their 108-100 loss to the Hornets on Monday. Are the Clippers this year's anti-Bucks?

The Clippers are so ridiculous, so nutty, so laughin' when you're down nine in the fourth quarter, so full of weirdos that pass up open shots to take odd shots while doing weird things on each end of the floor while likely making all sorts of excuses in the huddle or while running (sometimes) back down the court. If a certain season-ticket holder had any hair on his chinny-chin-chin, he'd actually report on a few things and give us a book for the ages on this mess.

Mismatch?
This game looks like a major mismatch considering the recent forms of the team: The Clippers (eight straight losses) are as cold as the Bucks are hot (six straight wins). Los Angeles can't score and Milwaukee can't be scored on. If the Jazz/Bucks game was the unstoppable force against the immovable object, then this is the inherently stoppable anti-force against the immovable object.

But don't overlook any team on the road. The Clippers are 18-15 at home while the Bucks are 13-20 on the road. Granted, Milwaukee has been just about unbeatable on the road since Stack and Salmons came aboard, but even the elite NBA teams are vulnerable on the road. And hot as they are, the Bucks haven't graduated to the elite yet.

As such, the Bucks are slight, 4.5-point favorites.

ESPN.
Nice to get some broadcast love with the game on ESPN, but since it's St. Patrick's Day, against the Clippers, and starts at 9:30 central, not sure this will be a ratings winner.

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