Hornets.com postgame: Bucks 115, Hornets 95

Wednesday, February 24, 2010
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com

It had been quite awhile since the Hornets lost a game this way, falling by a convincing margin after clearly getting outplayed by the opposition. Tonight’s loss was the first time since Dec. 26 that New Orleans (30-28) lost a game by more than 10 points and the Hornets’ largest margin of defeat since Nov. 14.

Milwaukee (28-28) put together a methodical performance, gradually building a lead as the game progressed. The Bucks outscored the Hornets in every quarter, highlighted by a 28-17 third period that stretch the home team’s edge to 17.

Twenty-four hours after making his way into Hornets history with 37 points off the bench in Cleveland, Marcus Thornton tied his second-best scoring output of the season, finishing with 25 points on 8-for-21 shooting. Thornton’s minutes spiked up to 41 in Milwaukee, partly due to a left hamstring strain to Morris Peterson that caused him to exit after only four minutes of action.

Fellow Hornets rookie Darren Collison continued his stellar play as a starter, posting 22 points and nine assists. It was the sixth time in the last seven games that the UCLA product topped the 20-point plateau. During that same seven-game stretch, Collison has delivered at least nine assists every time.

The defensive end was the biggest reason this game ended poorly for the Hornets. The Bucks have been a solid defensive team of late, but they are not known as an explosive offensive team. Milwaukee scored its most points in a game since tallying 127 vs. Minnesota on Jan. 23.

“At the end of the second quarter and in the second half, we didn’t match their energy on both ends of the floor,” Peja Stojakovic said. “They picked us apart. Defensively, we didn’t cover well.”

For more on this game from players and coaches, click on NEWS/Postgame Quotes on Hornets.com.