Bucks/Celtics: Four in a row?

2010/2011 NBA Season
5319_medium

vs. 5862_medium

26-38 (9-22 road)
46-17 (27-6 home)
March 13, 2011
TD Banknorth Garden
5:00 PM
Radio: 620 WTMJ TV: FSN Wisconsin
Probable starters:
Brandon Jennings
PG Rajon Rondo
John Salmons
SG Ray Allen
Carlos Delfino
SF Paul Pierce
Luc Mbah a Moute
PF Kevin Garnett
Andrew Bogut
C Nenad Krstic

(30th) 101.4 - OFFENSE -  107.3 (14th)
(3rd) 102.1 - DEFENSE - 100.4 (2nd)
(24th) 90.0  - PACE -  91.0 (21st)

On the Celtics: CelticsBlog / Celtics Hub / Red's Army / Boston Globe

The Bucks aim for their first four-game winning streak of the season against the East-leading Celtics in Boston.

Third time is the charm? Following two bad losses to the Sixers earlier this season, the Bucks crushed them last night at the Bradley Center. Now they face the Celtics, to whom they have also already dropped their first couple of matchups this season. The difference is that Milwaukee actually played Boston competitively in both of their defeats. They fell in overtime in Boston in their fifth game of the season to fall to 1-4, and then forgot to make baskets for a while exactly one week ago in a loss at the BC.

Four in a row? The Bucks have not won four games in a row all season. This current run marks the fourth time that they have won three in a row in succession.

Playoff preview? Milwaukee is now just half a game behind Indiana and a full game behind Charlotte (though tied in the loss column) for that final spot, with 18 more games. If the team makes the playoffs, they will absolutely be the eight seed. Even after the win over Philadelphia last night, they are seven games behind the Sixers for seventh in the East. 

And if they occupied that eight spot right now, they would play these Boston Celtics in the first round. However, the Bulls are just percentage points behind the Celtics, and the Heat are only 2.5 behind both of them. So the Bucks would certainly play either Boston, Chicago, or Miami in the first round. While they have not beaten any of those teams this season, they have taken Boston and Miaimi to overtime, and Andrew Bogut usually plays well against the Celtics. So while Kendrick Perkins -- whom Bogut has fared surprisingly well against offensively -- is now in Oklahoma City, this might just be the best matchup for Milwaukee anyway.

Of course, winning this game gives a better chance that the Bucks will not play the Celtics in round one.

Sliding C's? The Celtics have lost two in a row -- they dropped a home game to the Clippers on Wednesday and then fell in Philadelphia on Friday. Prior to that, they had won five in a row, the last of which was an 89-83 win in Milwaukee last Sunday. Of course, while the Sixers were due for a letdown after beating the Celtics and then playing the next night in Milwaukee, the Celtics are probably primed to re-focus after falling to the Sixers and then getting a couple days of rest.

Murphy's Law? New Celtic Troy Murphy missed his first ten shots for Boston over the span of four games, finally making one in the loss to the Sixers. As such, Murphy is shooting 9.1 % from the field. He had not played in almost two months before debuting with the Celtics on March 2, so his drowsy start is understandable if not acceptable.

Large baby? Glen Davis is set to return tonight.

Ersan? Last night's win against Philadelphia brought back many of the feel-good vibes of last season's spring run at the Bradley Center, but notably absent was Ersan Ilyasova (concussion), who missed his seventh straight game. And the outlook is not so clear or good. Hopefully next season the Bucks will lead the league in neither concussions nor miles biked. Coach Skiles, before the Sixers game, on Ilyasova:

My understanding is he is going to do a little bit of bike-riding or something on Monday. So, we'll see.

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