The last time the Milwaukee Bucks won five of their first seven games, it came during the same season they last made the playoffs.
The Bucks try for their first four-game winning streak in two years when they host the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night.
Even without injured star Michael Redd(notes) (knee), Milwaukee is trying to start 5-2 for the first time since the 2005-06 season. The Bucks finished 40-42 and lost in five games to Detroit in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs that season. Their fifth victory then came at Golden State on Nov. 12, 2005.
Jennings had a season-high 32 points and Bogut added 23 with 10 rebounds as Milwaukee won its third straight, 108-102 over Denver on Wednesday. The Bucks, who won three in a row twice while going 34-48 last season, haven’t won four straight since a five-game stretch Nov. 14-24, 2007.
“We’ve got a long way to go,” said the 7-foot Bogut, who’s averaging 19.5 points and 10.2 rebounds in his last four games.
Milwaukee has certainly benefited from a healthy Bogut, who played just 36 games due to back spasms last season. Jennings, however, has been an early surprise, averaging 20.7 points, 5.2 assists and 4.3 rebounds.
“He’s learned so much in (six) games, it’s like he’s played a season already,” said Bogut, who’s averaging 13.0 points and 9.8 boards in his last four games versus Golden State. “Nobody thought he would be this good yet.”
The Bucks knew Jennings’ potential when they drafted him 10th overall after he decided to skip college to play professionally in Europe last season.
“Fortunately, everything I learned over there seemed to impress the coaches and everybody,” said Jennings, who shot 11 for 19 from the field and added nine assists against Denver. “I just go out there and play with a chip on my shoulder.”
While Jennings has enjoyed early success for Milwaukee, rookie Stephen Curry(notes) is trying to find his comfort level for Golden State (3-5). Curry, drafted seventh overall after a stellar collegiate career at Davidson, is averaging 7.6 points in eight games for the Warriors.
The Bucks rank near the top of the league allowing 88.0 points per contest, but could be in for a challenge against a Golden State club that’s averaging 109.9.
As Milwaukee tries to improve to 4-0 at home, the Warriors look to build off their first road victory, 121-107 at New York on Friday.
Stephen Jackson(notes) scored 23 points, while Monta Ellis(notes), Kelenna Azubuike(notes) and Corey Maggette(notes) each had 22 as the Warriors shot a season-high 58.3 percent to improve to 1-1 on a five-game Eastern Conference road trip.
“Our game plan was to attack the basket, move the ball two times and we would have open shots, and that’s what we did,” said Ellis, who’s averaging a team-leading 18.5 points.
Jackson, who made waves after asking for a trade over the summer, is averaging 16.0 points and bounced back after being held to seven in a 108-94 loss at Indiana on Wednesday.
He’s averaging 19.0 points in his last four against the Bucks, and had 23 with 11 assists in a 127-120 loss at Milwaukee on March 7.
These clubs split two meetings last season.