Milwaukee lost for the fourth time in five games Saturday, 106-98 to the Los Angeles Clippers. Three of those losses came at the Bradley Center, where the Bucks haven’t won since Feb. 14.
Losers of eight of their last 11 overall, Milwaukee trailed by double digits at the half Saturday for the fourth time in its last five contests. The Bucks faced a 57-45 deficit after the break.
“We come out soft,” said rookie forward Andrew Bogut, who had 10 points. “Every team that has come in here has probably run the first quarter.”
Michael Redd led the Bucks with 31 points and helped Milwaukee pull within 74-72 by scoring seven straight points in the third quarter. The Bucks tied it for the first time at 78 in the fourth on a 10-footer by Redd, and led 86-85 with more than 6 minutes left, but the Clippers followed with a decisive 11-2 run.
After scoring 11 points in the third quarter, Redd went 1-for-8 from the floor in the fourth.
“We’ve got to come out with more fire, more intensity,” Redd said.
The Bucks have lost five in a row at home for the first time since dropping seven straight in February 2000.
Despite their struggles, Milwaukee holds a 2 1/2 -game lead over Chicago for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The Bucks look to end their home slide against one of the NBA’s worst teams. Atlanta fell to 1-3 in its last four games with a 95-90 loss to the Bulls on Saturday.
The Hawks had been off since Tuesday and were facing a Chicago team that was playing for the fourth time in five days, but trailed the entire game.
“We had way too many days off,” said Atlanta forward Al Harrington, who had 32 points, 10 rebounds and five assists. “We lost our rhythm. We lost our feel.”
Hawks reserve Josh Childress missed his third straight game because of a sprained ankle. He averages 9.8 points, but had scored in double digits in 11 straight games and averaged 15.2 points during that span before getting injured in a March 3 loss to Sacramento.
“Hopefully, we’ve gotten this one out of our system and well bounce back with a better effort on Monday night,” Harrington said.
Atlanta has lost both meetings with Milwaukee this season, each time by double digits.