Bucks Top Cavaliers Despite Jamesí 52
Milwaukee 111, Cleveland 106
MILWAUKEE, Dec. 10 (Ticker) -- Rookie Andrew Bogut's season-high upstaged superstar LeBron James' season-high.
Bogut scored 21 points as the Milwaukee Bucks squeezed out a 111-106 victory over struggling Cleveland Cavaliers, who wasted a league season-high 52 points from James.
"I don't want to score 50 again, because I'm 0-2 when I score 50," James said. "I don't look at it as me playing well and us getting a loss. We just didn't get the win and that's all I care for."
The third-year superstar who turns 21 later this month made 19-of-29 shots, including 5-of-9 3-pointers. He sank 9-of-10 free throws and added seven rebounds and seven assists. But it wasn't enough to prevent Cleveland from losing for the fourth time in five games.
"I didn't feel too good today," said James, who played 42 minutes. "I just tried to warm up and get ready for the game, for the team. When they know I'm ready to play, they have to be ready to play with me."
Milwaukee opened a 104-99 lead when Toni Kukoc found Bogut in the lane for a big two-handed dunk with 2:39 left.
"Andrew sure made a difference at the end," Bucks coach Terry Stotts said. "He was rebounding, getting second-chance points. A lot of things he gets accomplished at the offensive end, because he's working hard and seeing the plays."
James cut the deficit to 106-103 on a quick dunk off a feed from Eric Snow with 55 second left. Kukoc missed a wide-open 3-pointer, but Bogut put home the follow shot with 32 seconds remaining.
"The big goal was to take those guys off the boards," said Bogut, who added six rebounds. "They're one of the best rebounding teams in the league and I think Drew (Gooden) and Zydrunas (Ilgauskas) were held to just four rebounds the whole game."
Cleveland trailed, 108-103, when James nailed a deep 3-pointer off the backboard with 28 seconds to play. But Bobby Simmons sank 3-of-4 free throws in the final seconds to seal the win for Milwaukee.
"I'm proud of our team, they got down by 16 again and got back into it by halftime and played a hell of a game," Stotts said.
T.J. Ford had a season-high 24 points and nine assists and Michael Redd added 23 points for the Bucks, who had five players in double figures and improved to 9-0 when leading after three quarters.
"Everybody knows what I basically did this summer and what I worked on," Ford said. "When I was open, I would take my shots and I would pass other shots to try and create. I worked hard on them and tonight I shot the ball."
Ilgauskas scored 20 points for the Cavaliers, who had just two players in double digits. Larry Hughes struggled, scoring just nine points on 2-of-8 shooting.
"We lost the game because we gave up 15 offensive rebounds," Cleveland coach Mike Brown said. "They had 83 possessions to our 68 possessions. When that happens, you aren't going to win a lot of games."