Wednesday, March 27, 7:00 PM (EST) at Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
34-35 (3rd Central, 8th East)
27-43 (4th Atlantic, 9th East)
TV: The Comcast Network Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic FM | Live Stats
THE ENEMY: B. JENNINGS | M. ELLIS | M. DANIELS | E. ILYASOVA | L. SANDERS
The visiting Bucks can avoid a fourth straight loss overall and on the road while trying to sweep the season series from the Sixers for the first time in 39 years Wednesday night.
Owner of the eighth and final playoff spot in the East, Milwaukee (34-35) has a 7 1/2-game lead over ninth-place Philadelphia (27-43), is within striking distance of seventh-place Boston and four games out of the fifth spot. The Bucks, however, have dropped six of eight since winning six of seven and need to get back on track if they want to avoid facing streaking Miami in the first round.
"We have a lot of work to do," said guard Brandon Jennings, who had 12 points and 13 assists in Sunday's 104-99 loss to Atlanta on Sunday. "We'll just see what happens."
Two of Milwaukee's last three defeats came against the Hawks, who are sixth in the East. Monta Ellis scored 20 and Ersan Ilyasova had 19 with 10 rebounds as the Bucks looked slightly better Monday, shooting 45.7 percent after making 34.0 percent of their shots in the previous two contests. The Hawks, however, scored 23 points off 16 Milwaukee turnovers.
"We were right there, but just had some bad turnovers at the end," said Ilyasova, who returned after missing three games with a back injury and has averaged 21.5 points with 12.5 rebounds in his last four. "We are a good team and I know we can still make a run."
Milwaukee might have a good chance to begin a potential run with a fourth straight win over Philadelphia and first sweep 1973-74 -- which also was Sixers coach Doug Collins' rookie season. The Bucks have averaged 103.0 points and shot 48.2 percent in the season's first three meetings, including a 105-96 win at Philadelphia on Nov. 12.
The Bucks have not won consecutive games in Philadelphia since 2005-06.
Ellis has scored at least 20 points in 13 of 15 games overall, and averaged 22.0 in his last seven versus Philadelphia.
Jennings has totaled 16 points and shot 5 of 30, including 1 of 12 from 3-point range, in the last two contests. However, he's averaged 26.3 on 47.5 percent shooting against the Sixers this season. He scored 33 and went 4 of 9 from beyond the arc at Philadelphia in November.
The Sixers have won two straight at home but look to bounce back after they concluded a 1/3 road trip with a 107-91 loss at Utah on Monday. Dorell Wright scored a team-high 19 off the bench as Philadelphia shot 38.6 percent and committed 13 turnovers that the Jazz turned into 24 points.
"We got it handed to us," said 7-foot-1 Spencer Hawes, who is averaging 16.2 points and 11.6 boards in six games. "Not much else to say."
Philadelphia swingman Evan Turner totaled 43 points despite going 8 of 19 from the field in each of the last two meetings with Milwaukee.
He's averaged a mere 9.0 points, shot 38.2 percent and committed 20 turnovers in the last 11 overall.
• The Bucks are averaging 103.0 points on 48.2% shooting while Sixers are averaging 96.7 ppg on 44.1% FGs… Milwaukee is averaging 7.33 blocks.
• Milwaukee has made as many free throws (53) as Philly has attempted… The Sixers are averaging 7.3 3FGM on 41.5% shooting… Bucks: 17.0 tpg.
• Jrue Holiday is averaging 16.7 points and 10.0 assists but is shooting 40.4% from the floor and is averaging 7.0 turnovers… Turner: 17.0 ppg.
• Brandon Jennings is averaging 26.3 points on 47.5% shooting and has more steals (11) than turnovers (9)… Ellis: 21.0 ppg, 7.3 apg, 4.7 rpg.
LAST TIME THEY MET
Sixers 92, Bucks 94 – February 13, 2013
Philly outshot Milwaukee 64.7% to 30.0% in the first quarter, never trailed, and was up 10 entering the second quarter
• The Bucks' smallest deficit of seven points in the second quarter came in the final moments of the first half; Milwaukee outrebounded Philly 16-6 in the second quarter.
• Milwaukee only trailed by three heading into the fourth; Brandon Jennings scored 12 of his 21 points in that quarter.
• Philly led 81-80 with 6:51 remaining, before Milwaukee took the lead for good with a 5-0 run; Jrue Holiday had a chance to send the game into overtime but missed a jumper with 11.7 seconds left.
• Philly outshot Milwaukee 44.7% to 42.0%, but was outscored 54-42 in points in the paint.
• Monta Ellis scored 13 of his game-high 27 points in the fourth quarter.
• Evan Turner led Philly with 20 points.
• Milwaukee had 10 blocks.
• Jrue Holiday finished with 16 points and 12 assists.