Despite their recent struggles, the Milwaukee Bucks’ postseason hopes remain very much alive. They’ll look to get back on track with a nonthreatening upcoming schedule.
The Bucks will try to avoid matching a season-worst five-game losing streak when they host the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night.
“There’s no excuse for our effort, we played terribly offensively, defensively,” said Bogut, who had 18 points and nine rebounds. “Talent doesn’t cut it in this league. We’re a talented team, but we’re not good enough at the moment.
“Whether we find that in practice, or we find it wherever we find it, we need to find it before Tuesday. We have two winnable games coming up; we’ll go from there.”
The Bucks (19-30), who are 2 1/2 games behind Indiana for eighth place in the Eastern Conference, have a chance to improve their position with four of their next five contests against opponents who currently own losing records - including a meeting with struggling Washington on Wednesday.
While Bogut was one of only two players to record double-digit points Saturday, it was a different story Jan. 28, when Milwaukee posted its highest scoring output of the season in a 116-110 overtime win at Toronto.
Milwaukee’s 91.3 points per game rank last in the league but it could take advantage of a Raptors defense allowing an average of 105.3 points during a nine-game road losing streak.
Toronto hasn’t lost 10 straight as the visiting team within one season since a franchise-worst 11-game slide Dec. 1, 2004-Jan. 14, 2005.
Bargnani, who is averaging a team-best 21.1 points, was limited to 13.0 per game on 23.5 percent shooting over his previous three contests. He is averaging just 9.8 points at Milwaukee over his career.
“Amir was unbelievable,” coach Jay Triano said. “His line is almost perfect basketball for a power forward.”
Johnson is averaging 18.4 points - 8.0 more than his season mark - and 10.2 boards over his last five games, including a season-high 24-point effort with 12 rebounds in the Jan. 28 loss to the Bucks.
The Bucks have taken five of seven in the series while averaging 107.3 points.