January 13, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; Milwaukee Bucks guard Monta Ellis (11) dribbles the ball past Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan (10) during the second half at the Air Canada Centre. Milwaukee defeated Toronto 107-96. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee Bucks Game Preview: Canadian Imports and a Lack of Magic

The Bucks need a name other than ‘magic number’.

Right now, they’re ‘magic number’ is two, but what the Bucks are doing right now is a far cry from magic.  It’s not tragic either, because the Bucks will likely land in the playoffs.

Any combination of two Bucks wins and 76ers losses puts Milwaukee in the playoffs.  Milwaukee won the three of four games against the 76ers this season, so they would hold the tiebreaker in the scenario where the two teams finish tied.

Two is neither a number of magic or tragedy.  Let’s call it ‘the number of malaise’.

It could even happen tonight. With a win tonight against the Raptors, and the 76ers facing the defending champion Heat, there’s a better chance than normal that the Bucks could chip the final two games off the tally.

Projected Lineups

Raptors: Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, Rudy Gay, Amir Johnson, Jonas Valanciunas
Bucks: Brandon Jennings, Monta Ellis, Marquis Daniels, Ersan Ilyasova, Larry Sanders

Injuries

Andrea Bargnani is out with an elbow injury. Ekpe Udoh rolled his ankle in the fourth quarter of the Knicks game while trying to plant and contest a Carmelo Anthony shot.  It would be surprising if he played.

Some numbers

For a team that has realistically been out of the playoff race for nearly the entire season, the Raptors’ numbers sure do look a whole lot like the Bucks’.

Offense Four Factors Defense Four Factors
Rk Team MOV SOS SRS ORtg DRtg Pace eFG% TOV% ORB% FT/FGA eFG% TOV% DRB% FT/FGA Arena Attendance
19 Milwaukee Bucks -1.45 -0.39 -1.84 104.0 105.5 94.6 .476 12.7 28.2 .176 .494 14.5 71.3 .203 BMO Harris Bradley Center 583,206
21 Toronto Raptors -2.14 -0.48 -2.63 105.6 107.9 90.3 .487 13.0 25.7 .211 .501 13.7 73.3 .253 Air Canada Centre 688,829
League Average 0.00 0.00 0.00 105.8 105.8 91.9 .496 13.7 26.6 .204 .496 13.7 73.4 .204 654,118
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/6/2013.

So the Bucks are yielding 105.5 points per 100 possessions? That’s utterly lax, especially for a team with Larry Sanders in the middle.  It’s HIGHER than the mark the team posted last year with Drew Gooden patrolling the paint and Milwaukee’s worst since Andrew Bogut missed most of the 2008-09 season.  Wow.

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Tags: Drew Gooden Larry Sanders Milwaukee Bucks Toronto Raptors

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