TORONTO, Feb. 17 (Ticker) --
George Karl parked Glenn Robinson
on the bench for the entire fourth quarter while Ray Allen
and Sam Cassell
bailed out the Milwaukee Bucks.
Allen's jumper from the right corner with 34 seconds left snapped a tie and Alvin Williams missed three of four free throws down the stretch as the Bucks broke a three-game losing streak with a 91-86 victory over the Toronto Raptors.
The Raptors suffered their fourth straight loss since the All-Star break without star Vince Carter, who is sidelined with a strained quadricep muscle.
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Michael Redd takes off like his NBA career has. Redd came up big with clutch free throws in Toronto.
Robinson, Milwaukee's top frontcourt scoring threat, hit just 3-of-14 shots and was benched by Karl with 4:48 left in the third quarter with the Raptors in the middle of a 13-2 run that opened a 69-56 lead.
"There was nothing wrong with Glenn, but we needed some energy," Karl said.
If Milwaukee general manager Ernie Grunfeld is contemplating a trade before Thursday's deadline to add toughness inside, this game may serve as the final push. The Bucks were outscored 36-8 in the paint and allowed little-used Mamadou N'diaye to collect eight points and seven rebounds in 15 minutes off the bench for the Raptors.
But Allen and Cassell, who each had 20 points, again came to the rescue with their perimeter shooting.
"This team needs me to score 20 points a game to be successful," Allen said. "Credit my teammates for having the ability to find me."
Allen hit two baskets to close the third quarter and ignite a 19-6 run which Cassell capped with a 3-pointer with 6:53 left, tying the game at 75-75.
Cassell, who had missed Milwaukee's previous two games with a sprained left big toe, admitted he was still bothered by the injury.
"I feel terrible," Cassell said. "I don't have the ability to plant my left foot."
Yet the point guard connected on a 3-pointer from the left side to give the Bucks an 80-78 lead with 3:32 left.
But Toronto's Antonio Davis, who had 17 rebounds, converted a pair of free throws to tie the game.
The Raptors reclaimed the lead when the 7-foot N'diaye, who had played six minutes in two games this season, rebounded a miss by Williams and scored while being fouled by Tim Thomas. He completed the three-point play with a free throw.
Thomas, who had 15 points, responded with a 3-pointer with 2:16 left, tying it, 83-83.
"We can't afford to have any kind of breakdowns like the one when Tim Thomas was open for the 3-point shot," Raptors coach Lenny Wilkens said. "He's a very good outside shooter and you can't leave him open like we did."
Cassell again gave Milwaukee the lead with a pair of free throws with 1:43 remaining.
Williams, who led the Raptors with 24 points, hit a running jumper in the lane to tie the game with 52 seconds left.
It was Allen's turn as he drilled an 18-footer from the right sideline to give Milwaukee the lead for good at 87-85.
Williams was fouled with 23 seconds left but missed the first free throw before hitting the second.
Milwaukee's Michael Redd converted both of his free throws when he was fouled with 18 seconds remaining, giving the Bucks an 89-86 advantage. Redd finished with 16 points.
Williams was fouled driving to the basket with 8.4 seconds left but missed both free throws. The Raptors were just 7-of-13 from the line in the fourth quarter.
"We had a lot of turnovers, we missed free throws and with a lot of people out we can't afford to do that," Williams said. "You have to play good basketball and it's hard to make a lot of mistakes with guys out of the lineup."
The Raptors were also without frontcourt players Hakeem Olajuwon and Jerome Williams.
Anthony Mason sealed the win with a pair of free throws for Milwaukee with eight seconds left. The Bucks converted 23-of-24 free throws.
"Vince Carter is usually out there on the floor (down the stretch), but they don't have that and they are searching for it," Allen said.
Milwaukee has won the last six meetings from Toronto, including three this season. It moved one game ahead of Detroit and two ahead of Toronto in the Central Division.
"I am very aware of Toronto. They're the next best team in our division," Karl said. "Having won these games is great, but I hope it doesn't come to a tiebreaking situation."
Williams scored nine of his 24 points in the first quarter, when the Raptors held a 27-26 lead.