Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 12/27/12
MILWAUKEE -- The law of averages is pretty clear; at some point over the course of an 82-game season, shots eventually will fall. They finally did for the Milwaukee Bucks, who shot 47 percent from the field and hit 10 of 17 3-point attempts Wednesday in a 108-93 victory over the Brooklyn Nets at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. Milwaukee's backcourt tandem of Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis led the way. Jennings finished with a game-high 25 points on 9 of 15 shooting -- including three of four 3-pointers -- while Ellis, who came into the game shooting just 21 percent from three, hit all three of his attempts and finished with 20 points on 7 of 14 shooting with seven assists, six rebounds and six steals. "We made our shots," Milwaukee head coach Scott Skiles said. "We made our threes. We made our free throws. We turned it over too much early but basically had the same kind of energy, the same kind of ball movement, the same kind of looks ... we just knocked them down tonight." Mike Dunleavy and Ersan Ilyasova got into the act, too, each scoring 17 points off the bench and combining for three 3-pointers. Milwaukee (15-12) hit five 3s in the fourth quarter, including by Jennings and Ellis in the final two minutes that helped snuff out the Nets' late rally, which had them as close as four points with just under nine minutes to play. "We knocked down some shots," Dunleavy said. "When a team makes a run, that's what you have to do." A 22-5 run capped off a 30-point second quarter that turned a two-point deficit into a 13-point halftime lead for Milwaukee. Brooklyn clawed back though in the third and got within eight when Brook Lopez converted a three-point play to make it 60-52 with 7:56 left in the quarter. However, Ellis hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key 10 seconds later, and after back-to-back buckets by Milwaukee's Ekpe Udoh, the Nets couldn't get any closer than nine points in the period. They trailed 78-67 heading into the fourth. The Nets rallied again early in the final quarter, cutting Milwaukee's lead to 84-80 on back-to-back 3-pointers by Keith Bogans and Tyshawn Taylor. Ilyasova answered with a 3-pointer that made it 87-80 with 7:37 to play. After Lopez failed to convert a 3-point play, Ellis and Dunleavy drained 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions to give Milwaukee an 11-point lead with 5:43 left. "We battled and we cut it to four," Nets coach Avery Johnson said. "We just missed a wide-open 3 and then we come back, got a little discombobulated in transition and Ilyasova makes one on us. We just had some poor communication. "But boy, what a battle for our guys; back-to-back games ... we had a chance to cut the lead from four to two or get it tied up, but just couldn't make a shot." Despite getting 21 points and 10 rebounds from Lopez and 13 points from Joe Johnson, the Nets shot just 36 percent from the field and hit just 4 of 21 3-point attempts. Andray Blatche and Keith Bogans also scored in double-digits for Brooklyn (14-14), finishing with 14 and 11 points, respectively. The Nets have lost two straight and five of their last six. "It's tough because of where we came from and how we started," Johnson said. "Nobody saw this coming. It happens. It's a long season. We just have to stay together and keep grinding. We'll get out of it sooner or later." NOTES: Milwaukee has beaten Brooklyn twice this season and has won the last 13 meetings between the two teams. ... Brook Lopez recorded his ninth 20-point game of the season and first since returning from a seven-game absence due to a sprained right foot. ... The Bucks' 108 points snapped a string of eight consecutive games with fewer than 100 points. ... Larry Sanders had 12 points and 12 rebounds and leads the Bucks with seven double-doubles this season. ... Brooklyn was playing without Deron Williams who missed his first game of the season with a sore right wrist. ... Milwaukee shot a season-high 94.7 percent from the free-throw line, making 18 of 19 attempts.
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