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Milwaukee vs. New Orleans: Bucks Hold On, 123-115

It was an odd comeback, but Milwaukee earned the victory thanks to DJ Wilson (???) and others

NBA: New Orleans Pelicans at Milwaukee Bucks Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

After a bit of a queasy start to begin, the Bucks rebounded by taking a 33-31 lead into the second quarter. New Orleans didn’t shy away from the 3-ball early on, as they chucked up 17 of them in the first quarter and converted on eight. They’d continue to revert to that style through the remainder of the half, and it helped them transition into halftime with a four point lead, 66-62.

Following a surge of Jhalil Okafor early on in the third quarter, Anthony Davis would return midway through the third quarter from an illness. At the end of three, we were neck-and-neck at 90 apiece.

From there, it was a bit of a strange comeback, but the Bucks got it done. It was a tough and well-earned victory, and had the Bucks not gotten this one, it would’ve been a tough pill to swallow.

For Milwaukee, it was Giannis who was at the forefront of the scoresheet, netting a 25/8/8 performance. Malcolm Brogdon sank 16 points, and Khris Middleton 14.

Anthony Davis led everyone with a game-high 27 points. That was with him being sidelined part of the game with an illness. Jrue Holiday, who’s one of the most underrated players in the league, contributed with 25 points. Darius Miller hit the 20 point mark as well for New Orleans.

Three Observations

DJ Wilson had his fingerprints all over the box score...again!

Okay, so technically, this was the first time I saw DJ Wilson put forth a performance like this. I was busy last game and was unable to watch a single second. But man, you have to tip your cap. His athleticism is what’s earning him these minutes, and he’s taking advantage of every one of them. From hustle to tip-ins to finding his stroke, it’s a new world for the second-year man out of Michigan. Bud administered the praise towards the athleticism as well in his postgame presser and signaled that as long as he’s going to play like this, he’ll earn time on the floor — and why not? He’s been put on Blake Griffin and Anthony Davis in consecutive games and has done terrific. Hmmm, maybe they’ll have to make this into a movie:

I can’t believe we didn’t see more of Jhalil Okafor.

He was TORCHING the Bucks all night long. Hearing his name gave me PTSD back to the National Championship which Wisconsin SHOULD HAVE WON...(.okay, this observation is going to be typed out as fast as possible so I can change the subject). In all reality, he was dictating the floor when he was out there. 17 points in just over 13 minutes is no easy task. Matt Velazquez opened up the questions to Bud postgame by asking if he was relieved that there Okafar wasn’t relied on more down the stretch, and obviously, he was. Like us too, he wasn’t expecting that sort of performance either. Nonetheless, we as Bucks fans will take that coaching decision by Alvin Gentry.

Balanced scoring wins ballgames.

If you take a look at the box score, you’ll notice that every Buck that touched the floor registered at least seven points. That doesn’t happen too well, but when it does, there’s a strong chance that your team will be heading home with the victory. It’s especially key when you see Giannis being bottled up in the paint like he was in the first half last night. The players on this year’s teams have each other’s backs and are ready when their number is called. It’s great to see and I’m sure we’ll see the same success moving forward. It’ll be very intriguing to watch how the bench contributes on Friday at Boston.

Bonus Bucks Bits

  • I always have so much fun watching Jrue Holiday play basketball. He’s one of the most underrated players in the game. He’s a stud both offensively and defensively. You can see him exhibit fits on anybody he guards, and he’s a lock for at least 20 points a game with his offensive prowess. Such a fascinating player.
  • Okay, I’m still drooling over that AD move on Giannis to start things off. A 7-footer should not be able to do this, yet here we are...
  • A week ago, what would you think if somebody told you that a lineup of George Hill, DJ Wilson, Thon Maker, Malcolm Brogdon, and Sterling Brown would be imperative in the Bucks notching a victory? That was the case last night, as that exact lineup netted positive ratings and helped Milwaukee keep the ship afloat. I hope we see it at some point in Boston.
  • I love the Pelicans’ uniforms. Definitely a top-10 in this league. Unfortunately, they weren’t wearing their City editions, but hey, I still love the red tops as well.
  • This play gave me chills:

Like, wow. I’ve seen a lot of Giannis dunks but this was near the cream of the crop. Just how he galloped down the floor and slammed it down with the authority...incredible.

  • Last, let’s end this Extended Recap with this “Hmmm...” nugget: