Bucks bounce Wizards
Keyon Dooling scored a season-high 23 points, Corey Maggette added 21, and the Milwaukee Bucks dropped the Washington Wizards to 0-20 on the road with a 100-87 victory on Wednesday night.
“At home, we’ve got so much energy and extra bounce in our step on defense. On the road, it’s horrible,” said Wall, who finished with 10 points and 13 assists.
The Wizards had ample opportunities to open a big lead against the short-handed Bucks early, but squandered a 12-point lead in a matter of 7 minutes in the first half as the Bucks began hitting shots despite missing starters Brandon Jennings (left foot), Carlos Delfino (concussion) and John Salmons (right hip).
“It’s a vulnerable time for our season right now,” Bucks forward Drew Gooden said. “We didn’t want them to get their first road win. We needed to win. We needed it.”
Milwaukee, which came in as the NBA’s worst shooting team (41.9 percent), went 35 of 73 to finish at 48 percent from the field. Andrew Bogut, who has been struggling with a viral infection, managed just six points and Salmons was scratched minutes before tip, but it didn’t stop the Bucks, who snapped a three-game losing streak with much improved shooting.
“When you see one or two of them go in, the basket gets bigger,” said Dooling, who went 9 of 11 from the field. “Scoring’s been a problem for us, but tonight we did a good job of putting points on the board. It was a good shooting night.”
It’s been a much different year for the Bucks after they reached the playoffs last season with a 46-36 record. Milwaukee (15-24) got two points on Wednesday night from Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, the only Game 7 starter against Atlanta in May who played against the Wizards.
“We’ve got to stick with it. If we stick with it, things will turn the corner eventually—hopefully sooner than later,” Bogut said.
Milwaukee turned a two-point halftime deficit into a 75-66 lead heading into the fourth after Washington went the final 5 minutes of the third quarter without a field goal. Washington, which has lost its road games by an average of more than 14 points, never came closer than seven the rest of the way.