Bucks 97, Bobcats 91
MILWAUKEE (AP)—Maybe all the Bucks needed was a new beginning.
The Bucks improved to 2-0 under new coach Larry Krystkowiak, and the players seem onboard with their new leader.
“It’s a fresh start,” Redd said. “It showed itself the last two games. We’re moving the basketball, we’re playing together.”
Krystkowiak complemented Redd on his second-half play.
“He wasn’t forcing the issue and he was biding his time and had some better looks in the second half,” Krystkowiak said. “The last two games he’s done a terrific job and he’s shot well.”
Milwaukee and Charlotte entered the game each with 24 wins, tied for third-fewest in the league.
Halfway through it wasn’t clear which team would record win No. 25. Charlotte led 47-43 at halftime, and Gerald Wallace scored the first basket of the third quarter to make it 49-43. Then Milwaukee scored 18 consecutive points — seven from Redd—as Milwaukee opened a 61-49 lead with 6:18 to play in the quarter.
The Bobcats answered by going on a 21-6 run to grab a 70-67 lead after three quarters. The Bucks eventually tied the game at 82 on two Mo Williams free throws, and they never trailed from there, although the Bobcats tied the game at 84.
Milwaukee, which was 18-of-20 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter compared to 5-of-10 for Charlotte, then outscored Charlotte 13-7 down the stretch.
“It all comes down to the fourth quarter and who wants it more,” Milwaukee’s Charlie Bell said.
Charlotte was called for three technical fouls in the fourth quarter, and a frustrated Wallace wondered why all the calls seem to go against his team.
“I’ve been here three years, so I’m used to it,” Wallace said. “If we’re not blowing them out, we know what to expect. It’s frustrating, because I want win. Every time we get so close it seems like it gets taken out of our hands.
“I’m pretty much used to that style of how the Bobcats are treated.”
Krystkowiak had a difference theory about three free-throw margin.
“The aggressor wins the game,” Krystkowiak said. “It doesn’t take a genius to know that when you’re more aggressive and taking the ball to the basket you’re probably going to get more calls.”
Wallace had 20 points and 13 rebounds for the Bobcats, while reserve Walter Herrman matched his career high with 18.
Milwaukee opened a 15-8 first-quarter lead. Charlotte closed the gap to 21-20, but then Milwaukee went on an 11-4 run to grab a 32-24 lead, with Ruben Patterson scoring five points.
Charlotte responded by outscoring Milwaukee 23-11 to grab a 47-43 halftime lead. Derek Anderson scored 13 of his 15 points in the first half.
Bell added 18 points for the Bucks, while Andrew Bogut had 17 points and 11 rebounds and Williams scored 17.
Milwaukee’s Charlie Villanueva missed his second straight game with shoulder tendinitis. … Milwaukee moved to 3-2 on its seven-game homestand. … The Bucks are the only team in the Eastern Conference Charlotte has never beaten.