Short-handed Bucks overcome 40 from Butler
“There was a stretch there where I can’t say I was anticipating standing up here with a smile on his face,” he said.
Mo Williams helped put the smile on Krystkowiak’s face with hit two key 3-pointers in overtime, helping the short-handed Bucks beat the Washington Wizards 105-102 Sunday.
Williams led the Bucks with 25 points and Charlie Bell added 22.
Michael Redd, Milwaukee’s leading scorer, did not play because of a left knee strain. Charlie Villanueva also did not dress because of a lower back strain.
The Bucks overcame a career-high 40 points from the Wizards’ Caron Butler to earn their third victory in the last 10 games and avenge a 24-point home loss to the Wizards on Jan. 4. Andrew Bogut added 18 points and 15 rebounds for the Bucks, while Royal Ivey added a career-high 17 points.
Williams said he felt he was responsible for the Bucks blowing the 11-point lead at the end of regulation.
“It all started with me having a turnover and it went downhill from there,” he said. “I felt really good coming through for my team in overtime.”
Krystkowiak said he was proud of the way his team responded during overtime.
“We talked during the timeout prior to the overtime that it was one of those defining moment where whatever you could do to muster up some energy and courage was needed,” he said.
Krystkowiak also praised the play of reserve guard Awvee Storey, who scored eight points in 17 minutes, including a key jumper near the end of regulation.
“Awvee was great,” Krystkowiak said. “That’s what he brings to us in practice all the time. I thought he was one of the catalysts for the tempo of the game changing.”
The loss was tough for the Racine-native Butler, who was playing in front of his family, including his mother, who was sitting courtside. Butler hit 13 of 27 shots, including four 3-pointers, grabbed eight rebounds and had five steals.
“It was fun being back in front of the home crowd, but it would have been better with a win,” he said. When asked if his performance would help secure him a spot as an All-Star when reserves are announced, Butler said he had no idea.
“We’ll have to wait and see what happens,” he said. “I’m doing everything possible to get there.”
Wizards coach Eddie Jordan, who has been lobbying for Butler to be named to the All-Star team, said Butler’s performance was that of “an All-Star player.”
In overtime, Butler stole the ball and hit a driving layup with 2:18 remaining. He was fouled and hit the free throw to give the Wizards a 99-95 lead.
Williams hit a 3-pointer from the baseline with 1:19 remaining to cut the lead to 99-98. After Brendan Haywood missed a jumper, Williams hit another 3 from the top of the key to give the Bucks a 101-99 lead with 47 seconds remaining.
DeShawn Stevenson then missed a jumper, with Bogut getting the rebound. After a timeout, Awvee Storey hit a 21-foot jumper with the shot clock running out to give the Bucks a 103-99 lead.
Butler then hit a 3-pointer from the corner to trim the lead to one. Williams was fouled and hit both free throws to make it 105-102 before Jamison missed a desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer.
“We just didn’t execute the way we needed to at the end,” Jordan said.
The Wizards tied the game when Butler grabbed a missed free throw and scored with 20 seconds remaining in regulation. It was the Wizards’ second straight offensive rebound and basket on a missed free throw in the final minute.
“We were just doing everything we could to get back in the game at the point,” Butler said.
After a timeout, Williams dribbled the ball until he missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer.