Bucks Lights Out From The Floor In Win Over Nets
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MILWAUKEE (AP) — Andrew Bogut looked up and down the stat sheet. It was hard to pick out just one star for the Milwaukee Bucks on this night.
“It’s always nice to see us scoring in bunches like this,” Bogut said. “It’s much harder to scout and it’s much more effective when you’re out there and you have three or four weapons that can all score.”
Carlos Delfino scored 26 points, making a career-high eight 3-pointers, and the Bucks beat the New Jersey Nets 110-95 on Friday night to halt a three-game losing streak.
John Salmons added 25 points and all five starters finished in double figures for the Bucks, who still cling to hopes they can reach the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
“I guess it was one of those days,” Delfino said. “You start hitting the first shots and then your teammates are doing their job to find you.”
Milwaukee (27-41) is 2 1/2 games behind eighth-place Indiana and a game back of Charlotte in the Eastern Conference with 14 to play. The Bucks also are hoping to get Drew Gooden, Ersan Ilyasova and Michael Redd back from injuries in the next week.
“Carlos had a great night for us, eight 3s is big in any game. John Salmons was big for us,” Bogut said. “Everybody who played contributed. We needed a win like this at home.”
Brook Lopez scored 25 points for his ninth straight game with at least 20 and needed seven stitches, while Deron Williams had another tough shooting night despite 18 points as the Nets lost their second in two nights.
Williams’ sprained right wrist, which he aggravated bracing a fall, is becoming a big issue for the Nets.
“We’re very concerned and it’s something we’re going to have a deep discussion about,” Nets coach Avery Johnson said. “We were going to leave him out, but he wanted to go back in. I don’t think we can continue every game at this rate.”
Milwaukee shot 39 percent from the field during the three-game skid that followed a three-game winning streak. The Nets didn’t pose the same defensive challenges as the Celtics, Hawks and Magic did.
The Bucks hit 57 percent of their shots, just shy of their season-best 58.3 percent set in January against the Nets in New Jersey.
“Guys were moving the ball early, we got good looks,” Bucks coach Scott Skiles said.
Milwaukee finished the third quarter on a 6-0 run, capped when Brandon Jennings hit a 5-footer in the lane in the closing seconds to give the Bucks an 80-73 lead. Delfino’s seventh 3-pointer made it 95-84 midway through the fourth and his eighth came in the final minute. Jennings finished with 16 points and 10 assists.
Bogut returned after missing a game with a migraine headache and made a big early impression with a slam over Kris Humphries that drew a foul. Bogut converted the three-point play, finishing with 13 points and seven rebounds in 35 minutes, but was holding his right elbow at every break in the fourth quarter after getting tangled up with Lopez.
Lopez needed seven stitches on his chin and chipped a tooth. Bogut was icing his arm afterward, the same one that needed season-ending surgery last year after an ugly fall.
“It’s sore,” Bogut said. “It went right into his chin.”
Jennings said in the locker room before the game that he wished Williams hadn’t gone 1 of 12 the night before in a loss to Chicago because he knew the point guard would be poised for a big game.
No chance with Williams ailing.
Johnson said the star point guard will need four to six weeks of no contact to heal completely in the offseason.
Williams scored nine first-quarter points, including a 63-footer at the buzzer that didn’t touch the rim going in, but that was the last shot he made until a jumper in the fourth, nearly 30 minutes later.
He finished 4 of 13 from the field and 8 of 9 from the free throw line.
“I need to rest. Until I do that, it’s going to hurt and I’m going to continue to be frustrated. It’s affecting me mentally now, too,” said Williams, who described it as a strained tendon that does not need surgery. “I love playing basketball. I hate sitting out more than anybody. It’s tough for me because I don’t want to just sit out, but it might be the best thing. We’ll see.”
Notes: Bucks F Luc Richard Mbah a Moute had 15 points. … Gooden, who has missed 27 straight games and 42 overall this season, says he had a cortisone shot last Friday and is 100 percent pain free from plantar fasciitis that’s bothered him most of the season. … Ilyasova (concussion) could return to practice as early as Saturday and may be available for Milwaukee’s game on Sunday against the Knicks. He’s missed the last three weeks. … Redd (left knee) is on track to return next week.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)