Game Tips at 7:30 P.M. EST
Milwaukee Bucks: 5-9 (2-5 Road, +0.1 margin)
Detroit Pistons: 5-10 (3-3 Home, -5.4 Margin)
I had the Bucks as a pre-season sleeper to make the EC finals, and their performance has exceeded their record, but this has to be a depressing start for a Milwaukee team that made some savvy moves in the offseason.
The big reason for feeling bearish on the Bucks is Corey Maggette. Contrary to his reputation as a ballhog, Maggette has always been a relatively efficient scorer who eats up big minutes. This season, he has been an inefficient bench guy, who has earned a spot in Scott Skiles' expansive dog house. John Salmons hasn't helped.
Such is the problem with the Bucks' off-season signings, and with doghouse coaches in general. The only players who can win playing time are the type of "hustle" players who make 43-39 teams just slightly above average. Skiles is the perfect coach for that kind of team. Everybody gives a good effort, and learns something they can take to the next level.
In short, this team is shooting 41%. So expect a hot shooting night from the Bucks.
Keys to the Game:
Lock down the perimeter: Is it odd that a key to the game is simply playing into a team's weakness? I don't care.
Rough up Bogut: Without Bogut, the Bucks really have no interior presence. Two quick fouls + doghouse coach = win.
Man up on boards: That's one area where the Bucks can be dominant. If the Pistons can't rebound, it doesn't matter whether the Bucks hit their shots.
Question of the Game:
What is going on with Austin Daye? The DNPs are just nonsense. Enough of this.