NBA Game Summary - Milwaukee at New Jersey
(Monday, March 30th)
Final Score: Milwaukee 107, New Jersey 78
East Rutherford, NJ (Sports Network) - Richard Jefferson put a damper on his old club's playoff hopes while helping his current squad stay afloat, scoring 29 points in Milwaukee's 107-78 rout of New Jersey.
Jefferson finished off his double-double with 10 rebounds while Charlie Villanueva added 20 points, Joe Alexander 16 and Ramon Sessions filled the stat sheet with 13 points, seven rebounds and eight assists for the Bucks, who moved four games behind the logjam at the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff race and snapped a five-game losing streak in the process.
"We stay positive, frustrated but positive," said Jefferson of the club's slim playoff hopes. "We had a good win tonight, now we have the Lakers coming in and we need to try to keep it moving."
Chris Douglas-Roberts led the way with 14 points, Yi Jianlian scored 11 and Brook Lopez and Devin Harris scored 10 points apiece for the Nets, who fell 1 1/2 games behind Milwaukee and 5 1/2 games behind Chicago for the eighth position in the Eastern Conference. The Nets and Bucks have now split four games this season.
"We have to be embarrassed and ashamed by what we put forth," said Nets head coach Lawrence Frank.
In a battle of two teams with fleeting playoff hopes, the home-standing Nets came out asleep. Milwaukee found its collective shooting touch in the early stages of the contest, scoring the first quarter's final 18 points to take firm control.
New Jersey's last field goal went through the net courtesy of Harris' floater with 4:50 to go, drawing the Nets within 14-13. It was the only field goal Harris made on his first seven attempts, but the Bucks had a much easier time with scoring. Jefferson's three and Villanueva's slam started the burst, while four straight Jefferson free throws and a free from Alexander closed out the period for a 32-13 margin.
Yi righted the ship with a three out of the quarter break, but Milwaukee increased its edge to 48-25 on a mid-range jumper from Alexander with 5:38 left in the first half. That space between the two clubs turned out to also be the halftime margin at 60-37.
At one point, the Nets had as many turnovers (7) as made field goals (7) and saw the Bucks drain seven first-half three-pointers.
Things went from bad to worse for the Nets in a third quarter that emptied the IZOD Center and the New Jersey bench. Frank was assessed a technical foul, and Milwaukee built an 82-48 lead on 1-of-2 free throws from Sessions with just under three minutes left in the stanza. Milwaukee led 84-53 after three.
The rout included playing time for players down the bench in the final 12 minutes.
The Bucks won for the first time in the last seven trips to the Meadowlands...New Jersey dropped to a disappointing 15-22 at home, but has still won 11 of the last 14 in the series...The Bucks are just 12-27 away from home on the campaign...The Bucks shot 48.1 percent from the floor, while New Jersey made just 37.1 percent of its shots.
03/30 23:52:14 ET