The struggling Milwaukee Bucks took advantage of one of the NBA’s worst teams to end a three-game losing streak.
They’ll try to take advantage of another weak team when they try to improve to 6-0 all-time against the Charlotte Bobcats.
Milwaukee ended its streak with a 118-102 win at Atlanta on Friday for its third win in 10 games. The Hawks and Bobcats are in a virtual tie for the worst record in the league.
“We had to get this win tonight,” said Bucks leading scorer Michael Redd. “We played with a sense of urgency.”
Redd scored 28 points and Bobby Simmons added 25 in Friday’s win as Milwaukee salvaged the finale of a three-game road trip. Rookie Andrew Bogut added 13 rebounds to help the Bucks to a 46-36 edge on the glass.
It was Bogut’s first game against Atlanta, which picked second in the draft and could have chosen him if Milwaukee had gone in another direction.
“I don’t have to carry a big load on this team,” Bogut said. “Coming to Atlanta might have meant more for me offensively, but being here (in Milwaukee) with so many scorers, it just allows me to play free. I don’t score too much, but I do other things.”
Milwaukee won without starting point guard T.J. Ford, who did not make the trip due to a strained left hamstring. Ford, averaging a team-high 6.4 assists, is listed as day-to-day.
Redd has been the catalyst behind Bucks’ success against the Bobcats, averaging 27.0 points. He scored a team-high 26 points in last Friday’s 103-102 win over Charlotte.
The injury-riddled Bobcats suffered another blow during a 104-93 loss to Orlando on Friday. Leading scorer Gerald Wallace sprained his left knee in the third quarter and will be out at least four weeks.
Charlotte is already without Emeka Okafor (ankle), Kareem Rush (finger), Melvin Ely (ankle) and Sean May (knee surgery). The Bobcats, who are down to eight healthy players, aren’t sure how to replace Wallace.
“If there’s something out there that’s close to what Gerald represents, something’s wrong, because I think that player is already in the league,” coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. “I think the guys are beat up right now, but we have to recover.”
Keith Bogans scored 19 points to lead the Bobcats, who have dropped six straight. Bogans will likely make his 10th start of the season in place of Wallace.