John Wall whipped assists all over the floor in the closing moments of the Bucks game against the Wizards earlier this season, and the Bucks simply didn't have an answer in Washington's 118-113 win. Two and a half weeks later, the Bucks still weren't able to find any answers for Wall as he put up 19 points and nine assists in the Wizards' easy 115-86 victory in Washington Tuesday night.
After a pretty evenly contested first quarter, the Bucks were outscored 37-17 in the second quarter and went into halftime trailing by 18. The second half started out well for the Bucks as they were able to cut the deficit down to six with 5:50 left in the third quarter with some good ball movement and four threes, but just couldn't keep up the defense needed to make a comeback. The Wizards closed the quarter on a 13-0 run and the Bucks were unable to get close the rest of the night.
Despite leading the Bucks in scoring most of this season, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Greg Monroe struggled mightily on the night. Antetokounmpo scored just nine points on the night and added four turnovers, while strangely also missing multiple shots very close to the basket. In just 26 minutes, Monroe was only able to score four points and also added three turnovers.
The Bucks will have a night off before taking on the Cavaliers in Cleveland on Thursday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. CST and the game will be aired on TNT, which will be the Bucks first regular season appearance on TNT since the 2002-03 season.
- Rashad Vaughn entered midway through the first quarter. He promptly lost Garrett Temple on quite possibly the simplest action anyone has seen this entire season. That is why he doesn't play very often.
- The Bucks found some success in the first half on pick and roll sets with Antetokounmpo screening for Vasquez.
- Copeland entered in the second quarter when Middleton was forced to exist with three fouls in the first half.
- Antetokounmpo went on a nice little playmaking run with four assists during the Bucks run at the start of the second half. He finished with a season-high seven.
- Monroe caught a bounce pass in the middle of the lane and tried to dunk on the entire Wizards lineup in the third quarter. It was strange.
- I hope everyone turned their TVs off by the time the Bucks brought in the Tyler Ennis-Vaughn-Copeland-Johnny O'Bryant-Miles Plumlee with 6:22 left in the fourth quarter.
- When Antetokounmpo catches the ball above the elbow as the ballhandler in pick and roll situations, teams will keep their defensive coverage the same as usual and attempt to deny him from using the pick and roll. This strategy gives Antetokounmpo a straight line drive to the basket and it almost always leads to an Antetokounmpo basket. (Example from tonight.) It will be interesting to see when teams start to force him into the pick and roll.
- The Bucks just cannot seem to avoid debilitating runs this season. A lot of times coaches will stop these runs with timeouts, but these type of timeouts don't seem to be a part of Jason Kidd's strategy. Part of me wonders if they would help stop some of the runs the Bucks have given up this season.
- The Bucks most major problem in two words: John Wall. He just ripped apart the Bucks defense.
Wall’s ability to tilt a defense to him slightly and then skip the ball crosscourt is especially lethal against a team that defends like MIL— Mike Prada (@MikePradaSBN) November 18, 2015