NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, January 10th (All times eastern)
San Antonio Spurs (6-3) at Milwaukee Bucks (2-6), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - There's no question the San Antonio Spurs can take care of business on their own floor. It's just that they struggle outside the Alamo City and will try again for their first road win of the season tonight against the Milwaukee Bucks at the Bradley Center.
The Southwest Division-leading Spurs have won all six home games so far this season, but are 0-3 as the visitor and dropped a 108-96 decision at Oklahoma City the previous time out on Sunday. The Spurs were led by Gary Neal's 18 points and Kawhi Leonard posted 13 points and 10 boards off the bench.
Already without guard Manu Ginobili due to a broken bone in his hand, the Spurs received a combined 15 points from usual contributors Tim Duncan and Tony Parker. Parker left the Thunder game with soreness and scored four points. He is questionable for Tuesday's game for the Spurs, who had won six in a row against Oklahoma City and three in a row overall.
"They played very well and they kicked our butts in the third quarter," said Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, whose team was outscored by a 37-21 margin in the third stanza. "They did a great job."
Duncan can move closer to Larry Bird for 27th on the all-time scoring list and needs 30 points to match the Boston legend. Richard Jefferson is leading the team in scoring over the last five games, averaging 16.2 ppg. After tonight's game in Brew City, the Spurs will head home for three straight games versus Houston, Portland and Phoenix.
The Bucks have also been bi-polar with their home and road schedules in 2011-12, going 0-6 as the guest and 2-0 at the Bradley Center. They will try to remain unbeaten in front of the friendly faithful and lost all five games on a recent road trip after winning back-to-back home tests from Dec. 27-30.
In a 109-93 loss at Phoenix -- the franchise's 24th consecutive defeat in the desert -- Tobias Harris led Milwaukee with 15 points off the bench and Shaun Livingston posted 12 points in a reserve role. Jon Leuer and Ersan Ilyasova had 11 points apiece for the Bucks, who are 2-6 on the season and hope to get some players back healthy tonight.
"To go winless on a road trip is always a disappointment, but we have to figure out ways to bounce back," Bucks center Drew Gooden said.
Center Andrew Bogut missed the entire road trip for personal issues and is probable for tonight's game. Forwards Mike Dunleavy (groin) and Luc Mbah a Moute (knee) and guard Beno Udrih (shoulder) are questionable. Milwaukee will also host Detroit on the quick homestand and is averaging 100.0 points per game at home, as opposed to 88.8 ppg on the road.
The Spurs have swept each of the past two-game series with Milwaukee and is 6-2 in the past eight meetings between the teams.
01/10 10:37:19 ET