The Bucks outlasted the Grizz 102-99 (video / recap) in a far-from-amazing game at the BC Wednesday night. The Bucks looked to have put the Grizz away late in the third/early fourth when Redd (31 points) and company took advantage of the Grizz sitting most of their starters, but then Rudy Gay (26 but just one rebound and no assists) helped bring the Grizz back.
With the Bucks in a sorta-zone with and up three with less than 30 seconds left, Mo Williams rotated to help Yi on Gasol at the top, leaving Rudy Gay open on the right wing to hit the tying three. Not good.
Desmond Mason then bailed the Bucks out by hitting an elbow jumper to give the Bucks a two point lead with 7 seconds left, and Mo redeemed himself by stripping Kyle Lowry on a drive and then hitting both free throws to make it a four point game. The Grizz then almost pulled off the improbable four-point possession after Mike Miller intentionally missed a free throw, but Gasol's fadeaway three from the corner was just off. While the Bucks didn't do that much to deserve a win, it was a fair ending after Bogut looked to have swatted his fifth shot of the game on Miller's drive with 2.5 seconds left.
- OK, so Andrew Bogut finally made some noise against a pretty formidable front line, dropping 23/12 along with 4 blocks. But he was doing it largely in the flow of the game and thanks to some excellent distribution from Mo Williams. Not to take anything away from Bogut, but he wasn't just pounding the Grizz in the post, instead moving without the ball and working to get into good positions in the paint.
- Yes, Mo had 5 TOs but his offensive pacing was generally solid and a 12 assist night speaks for itself. He found Bogut a number of times for easy hoops, showing the sort of mentality that could make the Bucks a very solid team. He finished only 4/11 from the field but I think he was 0/5 to start, so he finished strong. Well played, Mo.
- Redd was the offensive engine, scoring 31 (11/23 fg, 5/7 3 fg) along with six boards and five helpers. The Grizz took a 57-53 lead in the third before Redd took matters into his own hands and helped carry the Bucks to a seven point lead going into the fourth. He also had a couple great looks for Bogut down low late in the third. Yep, the "all around Redd" movement continues.
- Gasol wasn't bad (16 pts on 8/14 fg) but Bogut and occasionally Yi Jianlian did a nice job of playing him solid man-to-man; no trips to the line is a very good sign. He had a couple easy put aways where the Bucks lost him, but in the post the Bucks did the job.
- That was generally my frustration with the Bucks defense tonight: some solid stuff in one-on-one defending, but they got lost on switches and fooled by back screens too often. The game could have easily turned out differently if Miller had made some of his open threes (1/7).
- Yi had his worst offensive outing since the second game of the season, connecting on just 3/12 fg (0 pts in the second half) and looking overmatched on a number of occasions down low. He scored on an outside jumper, a nice drive and lay-in along the baseline and dunked in transition after helping cause a turnover. But he did prove his value by playing some solid defense and making up for his shooting woes with some major work on the glass: a career-high 13 rebounds including seven on the offensive end. Of course, a number of those were simply getting the ball back off his own misses, but they still count, right? He led the Bucks with a +18 differential for the game.
- Credit to Desmond Mason for not only hitting the shot that broke the tie inside ten seconds, but also for a good all around game: 15 points (7/12 fg), five rebounds and three steals.
- Tough night for Charlie Villanueva. He led the Bucks with 13 in the first half, but was on the floor while the Grizz made their run in the fourth, forcing Krystkowiak to put Yi back in for defensive purposes. While Yi led the Bucks with a +18 night in spite of his shooting problems, CV had the worst differential (-15) in spite of his good shooting (5/9). Just doesn't seem like CV can defend down low without fouling.