Week In Review: Milwaukee Bucks Break Even Despite Losing Jabari Parker

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Dec 18, 2014; Sacramento, CA, USA; Milwaukee Bucks guard Brandon Knight (11) drives to the basket against Sacramento Kings forward Rudy Gay (8) during the first quarter at Sleep Train Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday, Dece. 18: Milwaukee Bucks at Sacramento Kings

Thursday’s game had a breakout performance for Jared Dudley in a Bucks uniform, the first career start for Johnny O’Bryant, and Milwaukee draining 13 three-pointers.

The Bucks defeated the Kings 108-107.

O’Bryant was in the starting lineup along with Giannis, Knight, Mayo, and Pachulia because of Larry Sanders‘ one game suspension for pushing Nicolas Batum in the back while he jumped for a dunk .  They’re going to ease Johnny back, which is why he played the fewest minutes (17) for anyone who saw action Thursday night.

Everyone knew that individuals were going to have to step up now that Jabari was out; players like Knight, Giannis, and Larry Sanders.  I guess Jared Dudley felt it was time for him to step up for Milwaukee as well.  Dudley scored 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting including 2-of-3 from three-point land.

He hit all four of his shots he took in the fourth quarter as well, including a three-pointer.

O.J Mayo got in on the early action as well.  Mayo scored 17 of his 19 points in the first quarter to spark Milwaukee’s offense.

The game came down to Zaza grabbing an offensive rebound with and getting fouled on the attempted put back with six seconds left.  Pachulia made one of the two free throws to put Milwaukee up one (108-107) with six seconds left.

On the inbound play after, the Kings got the ball to DeMarcus Cousins near the three-point line.  Brandon Knight came over and played nice help defense and Milwaukee forced Cousins to take a bad 20-foot jump shot that he missed.

It was Cousins’ first game back after missing the previous 10 games with viral meningitis.  While Cousins had himself a game (27 points,11 rebounds, 8-of-12 shooting), Sacramento played some sloppy defense and allowed the Bucks to hit 13 three-pointers.

The Bucks were outscored in the paint 48-26 but Jason Kidd knew that Milwaukee would have to score from the outside if they wanted to win, which is exactly what they did.

It was a hard-fought win for Milwaukee, and more credit needs to be given to Jason Kidd for the way the team has responded to Jabari’s injury with the effort and intensity they continue to play with.

Of course you question if they can sustain it, and while it is certainly a valid question, Kidd isn’t giving us any reason to not believe in them right now.

The win put Milwaukee at 14-13 on the year.

Their final game of the road trip was a rematch with the Clippers, except this time it was in L.A.

Next: Clippers, Part Deux