Posted March 16, 2013 on AP on Fox
After losing to the NBA's hottest team, the Milwaukee Bucks hope to avoid matching their longest skid of the season while hosting Florida's other, currently less successful, club. Looking to get back on track offensively, the Bucks try to avoid a fourth straight defeat Sunday against the lowly Orlando Magic. Though Milwaukee (32-32) has a seven-game lead over Toronto for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, it's dropped three in a row. The Bucks averaged 109.7 points and shot 48.1 percent to win five of seven before failing to score more than 94 while shooting 41.4 in the last two versus Washington and red-hot Miami. Ersan Ilyasova had 26 points with 17 rebounds and Brandon Jennings scored 21, but the Bucks shot 37.1 percent Friday as the Heat extended their winning streak to 21 games with a 107-94 victory at the Bradley Center. "The last couple of games we've had a lot of good looks and the ball is just not dropping in for us now," Milwaukee coach Jim Boylan said. "Over the course of a long season you have these spots where your shooters aren't shooting the ball the way you'd like." J.J. Redick had 14 points and shot 4 of 11 - his second-worst shooting performance since being acquired from Orlando at the trade deadline. Redick is averaging 14.2 points and hitting 35.1 percent of his 3-pointers in 10 games with the Bucks, and this will be his first game against the Magic, the team that drafted him with the 11th pick of the 2006 draft. Monta Ellis averaged 26.8 points on 51.4 percent shooting in the previous nine contests but went 3 of 11 from the field and finished with seven against the Heat. Though Jennings broke out after totaling 12 points in the previous two, he's shot 14 of 41 (34.1 percent), including 4 of 15 from 3-point range, in the last four games. Jennings and Ellis combined for 41 points on 15-of-32 shooting (46.9 percent) to help the Bucks snap a seven-game losing streak to Orlando (18-48) with a 107-98 home victory Feb. 2. In five games versus Orlando since 2009-10, Ellis has shot 50.5 percent to average 28.6 points - his best against any opponent. Jennings is averaging 23.0 points on 50.0 percent (26 of 52) shooting in three straight against the Magic. A victory Sunday would secure Milwaukee's first winning season series over Orlando since 2004-05. The Bucks might have a good chance to accomplish that and end their recent offensive struggles while facing the Magic, who have allowed 108.8 points on 50.3 percent shooting to lose seven of nine. Orlando trailed by as many 27 points but got within four before going scoreless in the final 2 1/2 minutes of Friday's 117-104 loss at Oklahoma City. Jameer Nelson scored 26, Nikola Vucevic had 21 with 14 rebounds and Arron Afflalo added 20 for the Magic, who have lost 35 of 41. The losses will likely continue to mount as Orlando began a stretch Friday of playing 14 of its 17 games against teams currently in playoff position. "This is a great test for us, it starts (in Oklahoma City) and it will continue the rest of the way by playing a majority of playoff teams who are jockeying for playoff position," coach Jacque Vaughn told the Magic's official website. "There are no off nights or sympathy nights. So we better bring it or we'll get embarrassed. That's a great motivator.''

Boylan not satisfied by late-game heroics

MILWAUKEE Jim Boylan certainly didn't sugarcoat anything about the way the Milwaukee Bucks played Sunday afternoon, though he couldn't help but smile after watching the show Monta Ellis put on to will the Bucks to victory. Ellis scored 25 points in the fourth quarter and 33 points in the second half to finish with a season-high 39 points in Milwaukee's 115-109 comeback...

Bucks Saturday: Redick downplays reunion

ST. FRANCIS, Wis. -- Athletes often try to play off the first few games against their former teams as just another game. Bucks guard J.J. Redick didn't use the clich when talking about facing the Orlando Magic on Sunday at the BMO Harris Bradley Center, instead he's more focused on getting his current team back on track and snapping Milwaukee's three-game losing streak...

Bucks F Larry Sanders fined $50K by NBA

The NBA has fined Milwaukee Bucks forward Larry Sanders $50,000 for using offensive language and criticizing officials. Sanders was displeased after getting whistled for a foul on Miami's LeBron James with 2:44 left in the fourth quarter of Milwaukee's 107-94 loss to the Heat on Friday night. He received two technicals and was ejected after directing a derogatory term at...

Bucks Friday: Mbah a Moute out vs. Heat

MILWAUKEE -- If the Milwaukee Bucks are going to snap Miami's 20-game winning streak Friday night, they are going to have to do it without one of their best defensive players. Small forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute will miss his third straight game with turf toe, hampering Milwaukee's ability to guard LeBron James and Dwyane Wade. Slowing James and Wade is hard for anybody...

Never-Ending NBA Preview: Bucks or bust

The NBA season is here. With that in mind, it is time to flip through the book on the 2012-13 season and to take a look at what the season might have in store -- especially when it comes to the Magic. Be sure to look out for more of these team capsules and to check out all the blogs taking part in this year's NBA Blog Preview (don't worry, I will be linking to all of them...

Magic lead most of game, fall late to Bucks

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Monta Ellis scored a season-high 39 points, including 25 in the fourth quarter, and the Milwaukee Bucks rallied for a 115-109 over the Orlando Magic on Sunday. Ersan Ilyasova added 20 points and 11 rebounds for Milwaukee, which ended a three-game losing streak. Brandon Jennings had 15 points and 14 assists. The Bucks ended the game on a 30-12 lead to pull out...

Harris a new player since trade from Bucks

MILWAUKEE -- Tobias Harris kept hearing folks around him telling him to be patient. Keep working and your time will eventually come. He'd just have to be ready. Opportunity presented itself last month when Harris was traded from the Milwaukee Bucks to the Orlando Magic along with Beno Udrih and Doron Lamb in exchange for J.J. Redick, Ish Smith and Gustavo Ayon. Harris has...

Tobias Harris Surprised Bucks Traded Him

Tobias Harris admits he did not expect to be traded by the Bucks in a deal that brought J.J. Redick to Milwaukee.

Magic Wands: at Bucks

Milwaukee, Wis. (18-48) vs. (32-32)    Time/TV: 1 p.m./FSFlorida Line: Bucks by 8.5 Tickets: $5-$190 on Vivid Seats Season Series: Magic lost 107-98 in Milwaukee on Feb. 2; Today in Milwaukee; April 10 in Orlando   Pace Off. Rtg. Def. Rtg. eFG% O.Reb.% TO% FTR ...
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