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Pacers 128 Bucks 106: Recap

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With an opportunity to catch up to the Pacers in the standings, the Bucks instead fell behind early and lost 128-106 at Conseco Fieldhouse.

Three Bucks

  • Michael Redd. Redd helped the Bucks mount a mini-comeback in the third quarter when he poured in 17 points. The Bucks climbed within six points at 80-74 with almost 18 minutes remaining in the game, but that's as close as they got.
  • Andrew Bogut. He hardly got the better of Jeff Foster, who finished with just three points but 16 rebounds, two blocks, and a +17 rating. Still, Bogut added a decent 13 points, nine rebounds, and four assists.
  • Desmond Mason. Mason produced almost nothing after the first quarter, but it was still enough to beat out the other contenders for this honor.

Three Numbers

  • 12. The Bucks dished out only 12 assists, but turned the ball over 13 times. The Pacers were much more respectable in this area, with 24 assists and nine turnovers.
  • 22-7. The Bucks took a 43-42 lead early in the second quarter thanks to a 9-0 run, but were then outscored 22-7 in the 6:28 before halftime. The Bucks made runs in the second half, but were never able to dig themselves completely out of the whole that was created during their extended lull before haltime.
  • 2. Number of field goals made by Charlie Villanueva and Yi Jianlian combined out of 10 attempts. This is especially of concern since they made only one field goal together on Saturday against the Spurs. To make matters worse, Yi left the game with a left ankle injury and didn't return.

Three Good

  • Dunking Desmond. Desmond Mason continued his recent energized play by throwing down four dunks en route to an 11-point, 5-rebound opening quarter. Mason entered tonight's game with 17 dunks, tying him for 109th in the NBA. The strange part of that is he came in tied with three other players in tonight's game: Dan Gadzuric, Jeff Foster, and Danny Granger. He's ahead of them now.
  • Daring. Strangely, Bobby Simmons, Dan Gadzuric, and Michael Ruffin combined for a ridiculous 17 offensive rebounds, three more than the Pacers had as a team. Then again, the Bucks missed 62 (!) shots while the Pacers missed 47, so the opportunity presented itself. The Bucks' bench trio also shot just 6-25 from the field, but at least they dared to mix it up on the glass.
  • Dairy. As in, the Bucks can now take a trip back to the dairy state, where they are 16-12, as opposed to the 6-26 record they have elsewhere. The Bucks have two days to rest before Kevin Durant and the Sonics come to town on Wednesday, and they play seven of their next eight at the Bradley Center.

Three Bad

  • Depth. The Bucks have depended on the trio of Michael Redd, Mo Williams, Andrew Bogut all season long. When others step up offensively, like Charlie Bell, Royal Ivey, and Bobby Simmons did in the fourth quarter against the Spurs, it's certainly a bonus. Unfortunately, tonight's offensive performance by the supporting cast is more typical. Desmond Mason joined the big three producing tonight, but no one else could score efficiently on a night when the Bucks needed to average 30 a quarter just to stay close.
  • Dunleavy'd. Mike Dunleavy scored 23 points in the first half. As good of an offensive season as he's having, it pales in comparison to how bad of a defensive year the Bucks are having. Has anything ever ended well that started by allowing Dunleavy to score 24 points in an hour? We think not, and tonight only provides more evidence.
  • Defense. The theme for tonight is "D." After racking up seven steals in the first half against the Spurs on Saturday, the Bucks did not add to that total in the second half. The Bucks also didn't collect a single steal in the first half tonight against a Pacers team that allows opponents to average 8.2 steals per game, bad enough for 27th in the league entering the game. That means the Bucks played an entire game's worth without picking off a single pass. The Pacers love to push the ball and can put up points in bunches; just ask the Raptors, who gave up 122 in a loss to the Pacers on Friday. Still, the Bucks must make a more serious and consistent defensive effort effort if they hope to avoid the Central Division's basement.