Bucks 106, Celtics 95
Jerry Stackhouse and Luke Ridnour scored 17 points apiece, and
the Milwaukee Bucks won their regular-season finale 106-95 on
Wednesday night as the Boston Celtics rested their Big Three in
preparation for the playoffs.
With Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen sitting out to
avoid possible injury, the lack of defense and excitement had
spectators moving toward the exits midway through the fourth
The game began as a possible first-round preview if Milwaukee
won and Miami lost to New Jersey. However, the Heat beat the Nets
94-86 in double-overtime, setting up Miami-Boston and
Rajon Rondo had 21 points and 15 assists for the Celtics, who
lost for the seventh time in 10 games.
Milwaukee finished with a 46-36 record, a 12-game improvement
over last season. That’s the biggest gain in the Eastern Conference
as the Bucks reached the playoffs for the first time in four
The Celtics finished at 50-32, their worst record in three
seasons. They won the NBA title in 2008 but were eliminated in the
Eastern semifinals in 2009.
On Wednesday night, the Celtics took their last lead, 72-71, on
a 3-pointer by Michael Finley with 4:43 left in the third quarter.
Then the Bucks finished the quarter with a 17-6 run that gave them
an 88-78 lead going into the fourth. Milwaukee led by at least 10
points the rest of the way.
The game had none of the defense – or intensity – of Boston’s
105-90 win at Milwaukee last Saturday night in which the physical
play picked up in the final 3:32.
Kurt Thomas complained to referees when he felt he was fouled by
Glen Davis but didn’t get the call, then got a flagrant foul when
he threw Davis to the floor. Davis got a technical foul when he
immediately bumped Thomas. On the next possession, Pierce and
Stackhouse got tangled up and Stackhouse was called for a foul
while holding Pierce.
Bucks coach Scott Skiles argued the call and was given a
technical foul and automatic ejection.
It was only 76-74 when Ersan Ilyasova hit three straight
Milwaukee baskets, a 3-point bank shot, a 19-foot jumper and
another 3-pointer. Ilyasova finished with 15 points. All Boston
could manage in that stretch was a 3-pointer by Rasheed Wallace as
the Bucks led 84-76 with 56 seconds left in the period.
For the Celtics, Marquis Daniels scored 13 points and Shelden
Williams and Nate Robinson added 12 each.
NOTES: The Bucks snapped a two-game losing streak. … Guard
Oliver Lafayette had seven points in his first game for the Celtics
after playing for Fort Wayne in the NBA Development League. …
Boston’s regular center Kendrick Perkins sat out the game to avoid
picking up his 16th technical foul, which might have brought a
one-game suspension for either the playoff opener or next season’s