MILWAUKEE (AP)—The Milwaukee Bucks might be buried near the bottom of the Eastern Conference, but they’re beginning to prove they can beat a good team or two.
And put on a pretty good show in the process.
Redd said it was the first buzzer-beater of his NBA career.
“The shot felt good all the way going up,” Redd said. “And I was happy it went in.”
Mo Williams scored a season-high 37 for Milwaukee, which has won three of its last four games—with victories over Cleveland, Denver and Detroit.
“That was big-time,” Bucks coach Larry Krystkowiak said. “We’re riding a little mini-wave here, and we need to try to keep it rolling.”
LeBron James scored 35 for the Cavaliers, who had trouble establishing chemistry with four new players in their second game since making a blockbuster trade.
James had just hit a game-tying layup with 5.9 seconds left when Redd charged down the court and was stopped by Cleveland’s Wally Szczerbiak, who forced Redd to launch a 27-foot shot from the left side that sailed through the basket.
After a replay review, officials ruled the shot was good and the game was over.
Cleveland players just shrugged it off.
“There’s nothing you can do about that,” James said. “The guy made a 35-footer fading away. You know, we made plays, gave ourselves a chance to win, but a big shot cost us.”
The Cavaliers were troubled by the fact that they gave up 25 fast-break points to a team that isn’t normally very good in the open court. And Cleveland didn’t seem to appreciate being on the losing end of a 37-14 free-throw disparity, either.
“It’s really, really mind-boggling to me,” Cavaliers coach Mike Brown said. “That’s the only thing I question in the game. Otherwise, I give them credit.”
James only went to the line five times.
“I think there were some questionable calls,” James said.
But James didn’t blame officials for the loss, saying the Cavaliers were out of place on both ends of the court at times.
All four players made significant contributions in their first game with their new team, a 20-point victory over Memphis on Sunday. But the Cavaliers’ new crew struggled from the start Tuesday night.
“We’ve still got a lot to go,” James said. “It wasn’t going to turn around right away. I said we were going to need a few weeks to get everything in motion.”
Cleveland’s four new players shot a combined 15-for-43.
“It’s still going to take a little bit of time, but that’s not why we lost the ballgame,” Brown said.
Szczerbiak was 5-for-18.
“I picked a bad time to have my worst shooting game of the year,” Szczerbiak said.
Shooting wasn’t a problem for Williams, who scored 22 in the first half and gave the Bucks a 57-53 halftime lead when he lobbed an alley-oop pass to from beyond halfcourt to Desmond Mason for a dunk with 1.4 seconds left in the second quarter.
Williams scored 13 in the fourth quarter, capping an effort he hopes to duplicate more often.
“I have games where I make a lot of shots, but I just always want to be consistent,” Williams said.
Meanwhile, things don’t get any easier for the Cavaliers, who play at Boston on Wednesday.
“They’re a tough team, especially on their home court,” James said. “We have to continue to play well.”
The Bucks honored Redd before the game for scoring his 10,000th career point against Denver on Saturday. But he’s about to be one-upped by James, who came into Tuesday night’s game needing 54 points to reach 10,000 for his career — a feat that, at age 23, would make him the youngest player in NBA history to score 10,000. … Cleveland played without starting C Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who sat out because of an upper respiratory infection. Anderson Varejao started in place of Ilgauskas, but got into foul trouble and scored six points.