"It's only the preseason."
That's been an oft-repeated phrase for Bucks fans come October, and Monday was no different, as Minnesota opened the preseason by throttling the Bucks 117-79 at the BC. In fairness, the Bucks were also missing plenty of key players: Andrew Bogut was ruled out just before tipoff with a migraine, Joe Alexander has now been out a week with an abdominal strain, Luke Ridnour missed out with right knee tendinitis, Charlie Bell's heel continues to cause discomfort, and Tyronn Lue has a strained groin. And to further complicate matters, Richard Jefferson left after just seven minutes with a quad strain, though he said after the game that his exit was merely precautionary.
Now that we've had a full paragraph of qualifiers, the game did actually happen and allowed an extended look at plenty of guys who won't be on the opening night on roster: Matt Freije, T.J. Cummings, Kevin Kruger, and Ron Howard got nearly an hour's worth of combined burn. That makes this game less than ideal for evaluating what the Bucks will be like come the regular season, especially given that everyone knows that depth--particularly in the frontcourt--will be an area of concern.
As for the guys who did suit up, Charlie Villanueva led the Bucks with 14 points in 22 minutes, while Ramon Sessions saw extended PT with both Ridnour and Lue in street clothes. Sessions finished with 11 points and six assists in 35 minutes, but also turned it over five times and shot just 3/11 from the field. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute also saw plenty of time, scoring nine points along with a couple boards in 25 minutes.
Defensively, it was a typical Bucks game: 58% field goals allowed, 8/13 3fg allowed, and 43 fta allowed. Apparently the Skiles magic takes more than a week to get going.
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