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Hawks 96 Bucks 80: Recap

Check out Frank's recap here.

Unbeatable Bucks last week, meet only beatable Bucks this week.

The Bucks lost big for the second time in as many days, as the Hawks won 96-80 on Wednesday night. After being dominated in the first and third quarters a night earlier against the Sixers, the Bucks saved their worst for the second and fourth quarters, scoring a paltry 14 points in each.

There is one good thing to take out of this: if the Bucks reach the playoffs, they should be in good shape as they are more likely to face the Raptors, Cavaliers, and Bulls than the Bobcats, Sixers, and Hawks.

Three Bucks:

  1. Mo Williams. 9-9 from the field, 1-1 on three-pointers, and 4-4 from the line.
  1. Andrew Bogut. Would be an All-Star if he played every game against the Hawks.
  1. Michael Redd. Led all scorers with 24 points. The Bucks need him on the court badly and they know it: he also led everyone with 42 minutes.

Three Numbers:

  1. Field goals made by Bucks not named Williams, Redd, and Bogut.

.175. The Bucks' three-point percentage, compared to .545 for the Hawks.

  1. Blocks by Josh Smith. Who's bouncier, Iguodala or Smith?  

Three Good:

  1. Bogut scored early, protected the glass, and was huge defensively, blocking four shots. In short, he provided everything we always ask for. He even made 4-5 free throws. Two of his three best games have come against the Hawks.
  1. If Desmond Mason isn't going to offer much in the way of offense, like recently, he needs to provide a spark on the defensive end, which he did a few times tonight.
  1. How good is the backcourt of Williams and Redd?  Even though Williams is banged up all over; ankle, thumb, and shoulder, he frequently was the quickest, most effective player on the court. And Redd sure can maneuver around the hoop, like for reverse layups, amazingly well for a guy known by the masses as a one-dimensional offensive player. These two have a lot to live up to to replace the duo of Sam Cassell and Ray Allen, but their progress this season indicates they are up to the challenge.

Three Not-So-Good:

  1. The Bucks were barely competitive against the Hawks despite very strong performances from the big three of Redd, Williams, and Bogut. That is indicative of how truly bad the rest of the team played. Things in sports have a way of evening themselves out, so it's no wonder the bench played horribly after its excellence against the Sixers.
  1. Although it was the second game of a back-to-back, it’s hard to believe the Bucks were all that drained coming into Atlanta. The Bucks didn't appear to expend much energy against the Sixers. The apparent gameplan to lull the Sixers into such boredom as to infect them with the Bucks’ unending supply of listlessness failed. But it should have meant there was plenty of gas in the tank, especially for the starters, who rested most of the fourth quarter. So why did Coach Krystkowiak stick with the bench for the majority of the second quarter despite horrific results? The Hawks pounced on the Bucks, scoring the first 13 points of the quarter.  It wasn’t even that the second unit couldn't take care of the ball, they simply had no ideas offensively. Bogut, who hit a couple pretty left hooks early and wasn’t in foul trouble, definitely needed to find his way onto the court before over six and a half minutes elapsed in the second quarter.
  1. Charlie Villanueva's outside stroke was seriously suffering. He hit nothing but the bottom of the net on one three-point attempt; the problem was that it didn't go through the rim beforehand. He also threw up a couple of other ugly bricks from outside and generally was a non-factor offensively, staying off the score sheet in 15 minutes.