THE FACTS: Monta Ellis scored 21 points, dished out 11 assists and hounded J.J. Redick on the defensive end, leading the Milwaukee Bucks to a 107-98 victory over the Orlando Magic Saturday night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Ellis keyed a third-quarter rally with two driving layups after the Magic had taken a 55-54 lead, then helped seal the game with four free throws in the final 33 seconds as the Bucks improved to 25-21. Brandon Jennings added 20 points and five assists and Larry Sanders had 17 points, 13 rebounds and six blocked shots.
Center Nikola Vucevic led the shorthanded Magic with 20 points, and rookie forward Maurice Harkless added a career-high 19 points, but Orlando suffered its ninth straight loss and 20th in 22 games to drop to 14-33.
QUOTABLE: "The defense that Monta Ellis played tonight on J.J. Redick was as good as you'll see all year. For the entire time he was out there, Monta was totally focused defensively. When he's playing like that and focused, he can guard just about anybody, and tonight he did just an unbelievable job on J.J."
-- Bucks coach Jim Boylan after Ellis held Redick to 5-for-16 shooting
THE STAT: The Magic outrebounded the Bucks, 52-42, and had more assists (32-26), but the Bucks scored 12 more points from beyond the arc, making 9-for-24 to just 5-for-19 for the Magic. That was the only area the Bucks had a notable advantage.
TURNING POINT: Orlando hung around most of the night, and actually took a one-point lead at three different times in the third quarter. But a 17-footer by Luc Richard Mbah a Moute started a 17-4 run to give the Bucks a 77-65 lead with 2:13 left in the third and the Magic never got closer than five the rest of the way.
QUOTABLE II: "We had to get this one, for sure, to keep a cushion of four games over .500. Now we've got two tough ones out West and then come home for three before the break."
-- Bucks forward Mike Dunleavy on having to beat the reeling Magic
HOT: Rookie Andrew Nicholson started his second game in place of injured Glen Davis and made all three shots he took. He had a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds Friday night against Boston.
NOT: Starting guards Redick (5-for-16) and E'Twaun Moore (3-for-14) combined to go 8-for-30 (26.7 percent).
GOOD MOVE: When the Magic pulled within 87-80 on Vucevic's jumper with 6:25 left, Boylan called time out. The Bucks responded with a wide-open 3-pointer by Dunleavy to start a 9-0 run that put the game away.
ROOKIE WATCH: Harkless set career-highs with 19 points and 14 rebounds and 42 minutes. That marked just his third time in double-digit points and his first time with double-digit rebounds.
NOTABLE: Jameer Nelson missed the game for the Magic with a bad bruise on his left forearm after a collision Friday night with Boston's Paul Pierce. The Magic already was without leading scorer Aaron Afflalo (calf strain) and forward Davis, who broke his left foot Wednesday at New York. ... Sanders' six blocks extended his streak to 32 games with a blocked shot, the longest such active streak in the league this season. ... Ersan Ilyasova finished with 16 points and eight rebounds. His two 3-pointers give him at least two in the last eight games, the longest such streak by a Bucks player since Charlie Bell had eight straight in the 2005-'06 season.
UP NEXT: For the Magic, Monday @ Philadelphia, Wednesday vs. Los Angeles Clippers, Friday @ Cleveland. For the Bucks, Tuesday @ Denver, Wednesday @ Utah, Saturday vs. Detroit.