NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, March 2nd (All times eastern)
Milwaukee Bucks (14-21) at Atlanta Hawks (20-15), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - A pair of teams looking to get back into the win column clash tonight at Philips Arena, as the Atlanta Hawks play host to the Milwaukee Bucks.
Atlanta will continue a four-game homestand and is probably glad to get February out of the way since it compiled a less-than-stellar 4-9 record during the month. The Hawks fell to 1-1 on the residency following Wednesday's 85-82 setback to Golden State.
Leading scorer Joe Johnson returned from a two-game absence because of tendinitis in his left knee and scored 18 points in 37:37 for the Hawks, who shot a season-worst 33.7 percent and fell to 10-6 as the host. Jeff Teague netted 15 points, while Josh Smith collected 14 and 10 rebounds. Zaza Pachulia had 13 points and grabbed 16 boards in the loss.
"We had a tough shooting night," Johnson said. "We weren't making [jump shots], so it was tough."
The Hawks will wrap up the homestand Saturday versus Oklahoma City. In injury news for the Hawks, Smith is probable due to an illness and Willie Green (back tightness) is listed as questionable.
Milwaukee will resume a three-game road trip Friday and opened the journey with Wednesday's 102-96 loss at Boston.
Ersan Ilyasova scored 25 points to go with 10 rebounds, while Drew Gooden had 23 points for the Bucks, who have lost seven of nine games and dropped to 6-13 outside of Brew City this season. Brandon Jennings scored just six points and missed two straight shots on a key possession in the closing moments.
"We tried to scramble at the end and we made it interesting, but generally you are not going to beat them in that type of game," said Milwaukee head coach Scott Skiles.
The Bucks will close out the road swing Saturday in Orlando. Bucks guard Stephen Jackson is out with a sore right hamstring and forward Luc Mbah a Moute (left shoulder) is questionable against the Hawks.
Milwaukee was beaten by Atlanta, 97-92, back on Jan. 23 this season at the Bradley Center and has lost 10 of the previous 15 matchups between the two clubs. The Bucks have dropped seven of eight as the guest in this series.
03/02 10:38:36 ET