Milwaukee looks to win its fifth straight over Charlotte as the two meet Friday at the Bradley Center for the first game of a home-and-home series.
After winning five of their previous seven games, the Bucks (15-18) failed to complete a sweep of their two-game road trip in Texas, losing 85-81 at Houston on Wednesday.
“We’re trying to maintain things on a consistent basis game by game,” said Bucks center Andrew Bogut, who was held to 11 points and nine rebounds after totaling 20 and 14, respectively, in Tuesday’s win at San Antonio. “This was a letdown after our last win.”
“We were a step slow and just had too many turnovers to overcome,” coach Scott Skiles said. “We were sloppy with our offensive execution and it haunted us.”
The Bucks split their last four games—all against teams with winning records—and went 3-5 on the road in December. Their schedule in January starts a little easier with four of the first five games at home, and Milwaukee already has beaten Charlotte (11-21) twice this season.
Overall, the Bucks have won four straight and 13 of the 16 all-time meetings against the Bobcats, going 7-1 at the Bradley Center.
Charlotte, meanwhile, has lost consecutive games after having won four of the previous five. The Bobcats are coming off a 93-89 loss to the New York Knicks on Tuesday in which they rallied from a 17-point deficit to take a one-point lead in the fourth quarter before fading down the stretch.
“Good teams and good players, they come out every night ready to play, no matter if they’re playing the Boston Celtics or they’re playing the Oklahoma City whatever they are,” Wallace said. “I don’t think we do that.”
The Bobcats are the NBA’s lowest-scoring team at 91.3 points per game and are 4-19 when held under 100 points.
Raja Bell did not start Tuesday because of a strained groin suffered against the Nets last Saturday. Bell is averaging 8.9 points and 3.4 rebounds in eight games since being traded from Phoenix last month. Matt Carroll started in his place and had four points on 2 of 6 shooting.
The Bobcats play five of their next seven on the road, where they are 3-9.
The teams complete their home-and-home series Saturday.