For the first time since November 6th, the Milwaukee Bucks managed to win a basketball game and did so with a 92-85 win over the Boston Celtics on Saturday night. Even though the game wasn’t ideal, in which the Celtics were more physical in the paint by a difference of 16, Milwaukee finally shoved the monkey off their backs. Head coach Larry Drew after the game said, “It feels good to get that monkey off your back, really does. Especially the kind of way we did it, short-handed as we were.” It was the team’s fourth straight win over the Celtics and the franchise hasn’t had that type of a streak over Boston since the 1998-1999 season. Although the victory was good, the Bucks can’t think too far ahead, they face the Celtics again on Tuesday in Boston.
Brandon Knight: 20 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Knight flirted with a triple double for the first time in his career. This game was easily his best in Milwaukee so far after battling a hamstring injury this season that has limited his playing time. “Yeah I would say so, as I continue to get more healthy, more adjusted to the plan after sitting down for about three or four weeks, I know I’ll continue to get better and better and our team will continue to get better and better.”
O. J. Mayo: 22 points (9-of-14 shooting). Mayo and Knight combined on the night for 42 points and the tandem played their best this season together. Mayo hit a couple of cold blooded shots down the stretch of the game to seal the deal and shut the door on Boston. “Obviously, every night’s going to be a challenge all around the board – outside, inside. Just about continuing to play hard and playing the right way.”
Giannis Antetokounmpo: Ten points, seven rebounds and four assists. I would have to say that this was Giannis’s best game of this season so far. “There are a lot things that people don't know I can do, but you are going to see. As the season goes on, you are going to see." His combination of length and speed is fun to watch in person. The highlight play of the game was when he went coast to coast by blocking a Jordan Crawford dunk and finishing with a slam of his own at the opposite end of the court in the second quarter.
John Henson: 13 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks. Henson managed to get his seventh career double-double and his first of the season. By the way he played, I wouldn’t be surprised if he continued to stay at that spot in the rotation. “We hit some big shots to stop them as well, if we can do that every night and keep playing like we played I think we’ll start to win a few games.” The combination of him and Giannis on the floor together managed to do well in Milwaukee’s zone defense. After the game Larry Drew said, “We didn’t run a lot of man-to-man that first half, but when we started running out zone, we just waited to see if they were going to make shots. They didn’t fall for them, so we stuck with it and seemed to have an effect.”
Ekpe Udoh: 38 minutes, nine points and 10 rebounds. Udoh played the most minutes of any Bucks player on the night and fell just one point short of a double-double. “We gotta watch the film and see what we did today and try to duplicate it going forward.”
The Bucks will have a few days off before heading to face Boston on the road again on Tuesday. The notable game of next week will be on Wednesday when Brandon Jennings makes his return to Milwaukee with the Detroit Pistons. Jennings piled 15 points and 13 assists when the Bucks played Detroit this past week. Milwaukee will then head back on the road to Washington on Friday followed by them returning back to Milwaukee next Saturday to face the Brooklyn Nets.