Perhaps the Milwaukee Bucks got the message when their head coach, Jim Boylan called them out following Sunday’s win against Orlando. Boylan criticized his teams defensive play in a win over the Magic, saying his players had no interest in playing defense.
Fast-forward to last night, when the Bucks jumped out to a 58-31 halftime lead on the Portland Trailblazers and went on to win 102-95 at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
The Bucks outscored Portland 31-8 in the 2nd quarter but the Trailblazers dumped 38 on the Bucks in the fourth quarter to make things interesting. Former Marquette star Wesley Matthews scored 20 of his game-high 28 points in the second half to lead the Portland charge.
The Bucks played without starting forward Ersan Ilyasova because of injury. Samuel Dalembert stepped into the lineup and contributed 16 points and 7 rebounds.
Brandon Jennings had 24 points and Monta Ellis 21 to lead the Bucks. Milwaukee pulled to within 2-games of Boston and Chicago and 2 1/2 games behind Atlanta with a chance to pick up a full game on the Hawks when the two teams square off in Atlanta tonight.