Tuesday, March 9, 2010
First impressions: Bucks 86, Celtics 84
By Chris Forsberg
Instant reaction after the Milwaukee Bucks posted an 86-84 triumph over the Boston Celtics Tuesday night at the Bradley Center:
How the game was won: Andrew Bogut scored a game-high 25 points on 10-of-18 shooting with 17 rebounds, 4 blocks, 2 assists and a steal as Milwaukee further cemented itself as the hottest team in basketball. Rajon Rondo paced Boston with 20 points, while Kevin Garnett added 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Turning point: The Bucks made six consecutive shots while embarking on a 14-2 run late in the fourth quarter to open an 86-79 advantage with 2:42 to play. Boston rallied, but that run helped Milwaukee keep the Celtics at bay.
Stat of the game: The Bucks finished 8-of-17 shooting from 3-point range, highlighted by Carlos Delfino's 5-of-8 performance. He scored all but two of his 19 points from beyond the arc and hit some big triples throughout the night for Milwaukee.
Unsung hero: John Salmons, a key midseason acquisition for the Bucks, drilled a 3-pointer with 4:01 to play to give Milwaukee an 81-79 advantage that it wouldn't relinquish. Salmons finished 7-of-15 shooting with 16 points over 43 minutes.
What it means: The Celtics got a glimpse of a potential first-round opponent and should have even more motivation to avoid the fourth seed now. Milwaukee continued its torrid play in the second half of the season and showed great poise down the stretch. The loss snaps Boston's four-game winning streak and the Celtics must find energy immediately with the Memphis Grizzlies coming to town Wednesday night.