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Preview: Bucks/Warriors

We don't have a full-blown preview for you (hey, it's the preseason), but a reminder to check out the Bucks and Warriors tonight at 10:30 central time on ESPN2.  The game will also likely be available for live and replay viewing online at ESPN360.

The last game was only available for a day or two in the ESPN360 archive, so keep that in mind if you can't catch it live.  No word yet on who might get rested for the Bucks, though I'd guess we'll see Mike Redd in uniform following his day off on Wednesday.

Between the games, the Great Wall and working with kids, Charles Gardner writes it's been a busy week for the Bucks:

Both teams practiced in Beijing on Friday. The Bucks held a 90-minute practice at the Olympic basketball venue before conducting a Special Olympics clinic with about 50 Chinese youngsters ages 10-19. Bucks assistant coach Joe Wolf and members of the NBA staff directed the clinic.

"It's not easy at all," Bucks forward Charlie Villanueva said of adjusting to all the travel and the time difference (13 hours between China and Milwaukee). "We had an 8 p.m. game in Guangzhou, and it was like 7 in the morning back home. Mentally, you can't give in to it."

Other things to watch for:

  • A Fair Fight?  While the Bucks rested Redd on Wednesday, the Warriors sat both Andris Biedrins and Stephen Jackson while letting their scrubs play most of the fourth.  Not that the Bucks were complaining about their first win in five preseason games, but it'd be nice to see both teams making more of an honest effort to win the game.  The W's just didn't seem to have the size to deal with Bogut in particular.
  • Rookie showcase. We've seen good things from Luc Richard Mbah a Moute throughout much of the preseason, but it was nice to see Joe Alexander also contributing in Guangzhou, wasn't it?  Alexander's a pretty streaky shooter anyway, but hopefully his fourth quarter performance provides him a shot of confidence going forward.  Some monster dunks would be nice, too.  Defensively he'll likely look a tweener for a while, but hopefully he develops a better feel for perimeter defense while showing a bit more toughness on the glass.  One or the other would be just great.
  • End of the bench.  Every team brings in some warm bodies for camp, and there's usually an understanding that they'll see the court a bit during the preseason.  It helps them get noticed by other teams and acts as a bit of a "thank you" for working hard for a team that was never going to keep them in the first place.  Basketball's a small world, so it's all part of playing the NBA karma game. 

    But let's hope we see less of them and more of the guys who will actually be on the opening roster.  It's somewhat interesting that the Bucks brought Matt Freije, Ron Howard and Kevin Kruger with them all the way to China (T.J. Cummings was cut before the trip), and I certainly hope those guys find good opportunities in Europe or the D-League.  On Wednesday Freije and Howard combined for 17 minutes, but if they're not making the team then what's the point in giving them the same amount of burn as Ramon Sessions?  And for the record, I've got nothing but love for Freije in a more general sense.