As we foreshadowed, the Bogut Whisperer is back. Charles Gardner writes that Sinisa Markovic is in Milwaukee, though he might have less work to do now that his star pupil, Andrew Bogut, has come to life with 44 points, 21 rebounds and 8 blocks in the last two games. Bogut called Markovic last week after a tough start to the season, but don't expect a long visit.
"He just came for a holiday, I think," Bogut said with a grin after the Bucks' practice Monday at the Cousins Center. "It's just good to have somebody here.
"He hasn't always come when I'm struggling. This is the most important time, rather than coming in February or March when our record or my game is below par."
"Mental awareness; there's the key," Markovic said. "Being active, participating in things. That's going to happen if you get at the right place at the right time.
"If the player doesn't bring ideas (to the court), that player doesn't want to grow as a player. It's about creativity; otherwise you become one-dimensional."
Bogut was certainly doing those things much better the past two games, as his movement off the ball and in screen/roll situations as well as his activity on the glass led to plenty of easy buckets. Whatever it takes, Drew.
- Jim Paschke answers fan questions over at Bucks.com.
- Tom Enlund writes that the Bucks do not like Cleveland, having lost eight straight in Ohio and seven straight overall to the Cavs.
"It's nice to get a couple wins," coach Larry Krystkowiak said. "I think we're feeling more comfortable from an offensive side of things. We need to focus out on the road here and try to get a win for a number of reasons. Cleveland has got the last seven W's against us. This would double our win total in the Central Division if we can get one and we need a road breakthrough. So I think we're cautiously optimistic."
Gardner also has a blog posting on the starpower the Bucks will be facing this week: LeBron on Tuesday, Kobe on Wednesday and Dirk on Saturday. I'm demanding some good performances this coming weekend, seeing as I'll be back in Milwaukee to see Kobe and Dirk. The Bucks are 9-1 in games I've seen in person the last two years, so either I'm a good luck charm or some serious mean reversion is in order. Let's hope for the former.
"Both those teams do a nice job of getting on the glass, and they have some bigger bodies," Bucks coach Larry Krystkowiak said. "If you think about playing with LeBron, there's going to be a lot of opportunities, a lot of attention on him.
"If I were a big playing with him, I'd probably be trying to get my hands on some rebounds, and the same thing goes with Kobe. You can't lose sight of the five-person attack. You've got to stay locked in with those guys to the end of the possession."
- More power rankings: John Schuhmann at NBA.com has the Bucks at #15, while Marty Burns at SI ranks them at #17.
- Former Bucks great Junior Bridgeman has been named a member of the PGA Tour's board of directors. It's the latest in a long line of business accolades for Bridgeman, who (among other things) started his own business after retiring from the NBA and now runs 160 Wendy's restaurants in five states and 103 Chili's restaurants in seven states. Congratulations, Junior!