Following a pair of losses on the road, the Milwaukee Bucks will look to get back into the win column on Thursday night when they host the Golden State Warriors.
After putting together a six-game win streak at the tail end of December that carried over into the new year, the Bucks have gone cold, losing four of their past five. They are coming off a 103-99 loss to Charlotte on Monday night in the second game of a back-to-back versus the Hornets.
Khris Middleton paced the Bucks with 27 points and 11 assists on 10-of-19 shooting. Giannis Antetokounmpo added 26 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists, and Jordan Nwora chipped in 18 points.
“Not every shot’s going to fall, not every night’s going to be an ‘on’ night,” Nwora said. “Unfortunately we didn’t pull through today or last game, but it’s about having those type of nights and being able to find a way to still win and I’m sure we’ll get there.”
Nwora has seen more playing time over the past week with Grayson Allen and George Hill in the NBA’s health and safety protocol, and the second-year forward has responded to the uptick in action. He is averaging 14.8 points over his past five games while shooting 50 percent from the field.
In addition to Allen and Hill, Jrue Holiday also could miss Thursday’s game due to a sore left ankle, and Brook Lopez remains sidelined as he recovers from back surgery.
Head coach Mike Budenholzer might also be back on Thursday after entering the health and safety protocol on Jan 5. Milwaukee has gone 1-3 under acting head coach Darvin Ham.
Golden State is also coming off a loss, falling 116-108 to the Memphis Grizzlies on Tuesday night in the first contest of a four-game road trip.
Stephen Curry poured in 27 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists on 8-of-21 shooting to record his second triple-double of the season. Klay Thompson added 14 points in his second game back from injury, and Andrew Wiggins and reserve Gary Payton II both finished with 13.
“We did a lot of good things to get back in it after a really bad first half,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said. “It was a great game. Two of the best teams in the league and they’re the hottest team in the league, and we gave ourselves a chance but we didn’t play well enough to win.”
The Warriors were without Draymond Green, who missed the game against Memphis with a calf injury. He is doubtful for Thursday’s game, Kerr said.
Thompson is also on a minutes restriction, and although he has wanted to spend more time on the floor, he realizes it is a necessary step in the rehabilitation process after missing more than two seasons with injuries.
“You can’t just take that much time off and jump into a 40-minute ballgame,” Thompson said. “At times I’ll go back to the bench frustrated, but I really trust our team and our performance team to have my back.”
In two games, Thompson has averaged 15.5 points and has shot 38.5 percent (5 of 13) from deep.
With their most recent loss, the Warriors have now dropped three of their past four games and are 5-5 in their past 10 meetings away from home.
–Field Level Media