NEW ORLEANS (AP)—Jamaal Magloire reminded his New Orleans teammates that they can go to him when the Hornets’ normally reliable outside shooting is off.
Magloire had 20 points and 11 rebounds, including three 5-foot jump hooks late in the final period, to help New Orleans hold off the Milwaukee Bucks 91-85 on Monday night.
“I feel comfortable stepping up whenever the team needs me and this was just one of those times,” Magloire said.
Baron Davis added 18 points and 10 assists on a night when he struggled with his shot (6-of-25). But his floater off the glass with 30 seconds left and his three free throws on the Hornets’ next two possessions kept the Bucks at bay.
“To our credit, when the game got tight we kind of went back to what we were doing early, when we got the lead and got the ball to the rim either off the penetration or by dumping it into our bigs,” Hornets coach Tim Floyd said. “I thought we couldn’t have won without our bigs.”
Davis was effective passing off of the drive and on the fast break, at one point thrilling the crowd with a behind-the-back bounce pass in the lane to forward P.J. Brown, who was fouled on the shot.
Brown hit the fould shots and finished with 12 points. David Wesley scored 18 for New Orleans, which handed Milwaukee its fourth loss in five games.
Desmond Mason led the Bucks with 17 points, while Joe Smith had 13 points and 15 rebounds. Damon Jones scored 14 points, shooting 4-of-6 from 3-point range. Michael Redd also had 14, but was held without a field goal until midway through the third quarter.
“You want to play well every night, but it’s not going to happen,” said Redd, who was 4-of-18 from the field against Wesley and reserve Stacy Augmon. “I’m not perfect. I’m not going to have many nights like that.”
While the Hornets shot 38 percent (33-of-86), the Bucks were even worse at just under 35 percent (35-of-101).
“We just couldn’t make anything. It was a tough night,” Bucks coach Terry Porter said. “We just have to figure out how to make shots.”
The Hornets never trailed after Brown hit an 18-foot jump shot with 3:39 left in the first quarter, and New Orleans built several double-digit leads. The Bucks refused to wilt, however, staying in the game by outrebounding New Orleans 59-47. Milwaukee had 20 offensive rebounds and 20 second-chance points.
New Orleans led 66-53 in the third period after Brown passed to Magloire for a jam and George Lynch scored on a tip-in on successive possessions.
Milwaukee regrouped during a timeout and responded with a 14-3 run, capped when Jones faked an outside jumper and found Smith underneath for a one-handed dunk that cut the score to 69-67 at the end of the third quarter.
New Orleans opened the final period with an 8-0 run for a 77-67 lead, but Mason’s layup to finish a fast break, followed by and a close-range shot by Smith, cut the score to 84-81. Magloire’s short jump hook made it 86-81, and both teams exchanged scoreless possessions—including two missed free throws by Daniel Santiago—before Davis’ floater forced the Bucks to foul on New Orleans’ remaining possessions.
“We’ve been in every game this year … so we have to finish the games out,” Redd said.
But the Bucks climbed back into the game with a 10-0 run during which Jones, shooting 29 percent on 3-pointers coming in, hit two straight shots from long range. Jones had eight points during the run, which made the score 41-36.
The Bucks trailed 52-45 at halftime after Santiago’s short no-look passunderneath set up Dan Gadzuric’s dunk.
Officials looked at a replay to decide whether Armstrong should have been called for a foul on Redd’s missed shot at the first quarter buzzer. They determined contact occurred after time had expired. … Davis, who shot nearly 40 percent in November from 3-point range, was 0-for-10 from that distance Monday and is 9-of-68 (13 percent) in his last seven games. … Smith leadsMilwaukee in double-doubles with six.