Erik Thorne

OnBucksBasketball - Week 21

The Bucks kicked off their twenty-first week of professional basketball with a trip to Portlandia. Since acquiring Ramon Sessions and Jeff Adrien, Milwaukee has seen a significant improvement in their scoring. The deer would need all the offense they could muster against the run-and-chuck Blazers – who are heavily entrenched in the western conference playoff race. Once again, Brandon Knight would lead the visitors with 24 points while leaving the point guard duties to Sessions and Nate Wolters. This contest went down to the wire as the Bucks had a chance to take a four point lead at the free throw line. Unfortunately, only two of four free throws were made and Milwaukee lost in overtime 120-115.

Next was trip down the coast to the city by the bay to face off against the Warriors. The Bucks suffered a big blow to their team early in this game, as rookie Wolters fractured his hand and was pronounced out for the year later that day. But, the show must go on. Milwaukee knew it was in for a battle against the best shooting backcourt the NBA has seen in years. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson couldn’t seem to find the touch the last time these two teams met, but this time the “Splash Brothers” were hot. Curry dazzled the court en route to 31 points and 11 assists while Thompson poured in 29. Klay was impressed by the Bucks effort saying “I respect them because they play really hard.” The Bucks kept the game close and seemingly competitive throughout, but in the end the Warriors were the better team and won 115-110.

Sunday games have not been kind to the Bucks this season, as they are 0-3 on the day of rest for the year. Game three of the west coast road trip would be no different as Milwaukee made their way to Sacramento. When these teams met just a few weeks ago, the Bucks were completely outmatched by the physicality and brutal nature of the Kings big men. Once again, DeMarcus Cousins was able to do whatever he wanted against his defenders and powered his way to 32 points and 12 rebounds. OJ Mayo made his second triumphant return to the lineup and was relatively effective with 24 points off the bench. Sacramento led by as many as 40 points, sparked by a completely dominating first quarter. Milwaukee was never in this game and notched their seventh straight loss 124-107.

This week we saw the pendulum of effort from the Bucks – from hungry to sleepy West coast trips are never easy, even for teams that play on the west coast. Milwaukee sank to a new low this year against teams left of the Mississippi, notching a 2-26 record against the other conference. That spread just shows you how far away this current team is away from being a real competitor in this league. With the season starting to close and effort begins to wane from non-contending teams, it’s encouraging to see the Bucks show spirit at times. One can only hope that real help in coming and brighter days will be ahead for Milwaukee. Until then, keep playing the game and let the passion flow freely.

BUCK OF THE WEEK!   Ramon Sessions   44 points, 15 assists, 12 rebounds

13 wins/57 losses