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Game Thread: Bucks/Nets

Ridnour's floater won it at the BC three weeks ago.

vs.

21-27 (9-15 home)
23-27 (10-19 road)
February 3, 2009 - 6:30PM CT
Izod Center
Radio: 620 WTMJ TV: FS Wisconsin

Probable starters:

Devin Harris
PG Luke Ridnour
Vince Carter*
SG Ramon Sessions
Trenton Hassell
SF Richard Jefferson
Ryan Anderson
PF Charlie Villanueva
Brook Lopez
C Francisco Elson
107.2 (15th)
Off 106.6 (19th)
110.6 (27th)
Def 106.4 (13th)
90.2 (22nd)
Pace 91.7 (13th)
26.6 (16th)
OReb 29.0 (5th)
74.8 (7th)
DReb 74.5 (9th)

08/09 Series:

Jan 9: @Bucks 106, Nets 104

Injuries

Nets: Vince Carter expects to play despite a sore right ankle. Yi Jianlian is out with a broken pinkie. Bobby Simmons and Eduardo Najera are both out with abdominal injuries.

Bucks: Andrew Bogut is out with a recurrence of back spasms. Michael Redd is out for the season with a torn ACL and MCL.

Three Points

  • RJ's return to the swamp. Former Bucks Bobby Simmons (abdomen) and Yi Jianlian (broken pinkie) are both out, but the man that they were traded for will be making his first appearance in New Jersey as a visiting player. While Simmons and Yi both played well in their returns to Milwaukee, Richard Jefferson made just 3/15 shots and inexcusably left Simmons wide open for wing threes on a number of occasions (including in the final 30 seconds when Simmons tied it). That said, RJ played well against Atlanta and Toronto, and will need to be on his game with the Bucks again missing Bogut. The Nets are even with the Bucks in the loss column but have three fewer wins, so stealing one tonight would be a huge boost as the Bucks try to keep their heads above water in the playoff race.
    Banged up. There's supposedly nothing structurally wrong with Andrew Bogut's back, but that doesn't make his struggle to get healthy any less frustrating. Bogut limped his way through another effective but abbreviated performance against Atlanta on Saturday, but he didn't make the trip to New Jersey in order to once again rest his aching back. The Bucks are 0-4 without Bogut/Redd this year, but the Nets also enter the game with a long injury list. Devin Harris is once again healthy after missing the teams' first meeting in Milwaukee, though Vince Carter sprained his ankle on Saturday. He's already said he'll play tonight but he'll likely be less than 100%.
    Young Nets. Brook Lopez capped off a rookie-of-the-month performance in January by dropping 24/17 on Philadelphia in his last outing, with his last two on a putback dunk that proved the eventual game-winner. Hmm, in retrospect he'd look pretty good filling in for Bogut, wouldn't he? Of course I didn't want to draft him either, so I'm not really one to talk. At least we got Luc Mbah a Moute instead of Chris Douglas-Roberts in the second round.

    With Yi out, the Nets have also been giving more regular minutes to former Cal standout Ryan Anderson, who should be an interesting matchup for Villanueva given both players' preference for the perimeter. This season Anderson's been less accurate (34.3% vs 37.2%) and also far more dependent on the long ball than CV: while about 20% of Villanueva's shots are from distance, over 43% of Anderson's attempts are threes. Needless to say the edge should go to CV, who's coming off the best month of his career (20.2 ppg, 7.0 rpg, ..517/.441/.861 shooting in 29.7 mpg).

Coverage:

Bucks.com / Ted Davis Podcast / Nets Daily