Dec 23, 2015; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Jahlil Okafor (8) during the game against the Milwaukee Bucks at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Milwaukee won 113-100. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Article continues below ...
The Milwaukee Bucks are back to .500 after losing a disappointing game to the Philadelphia 76ers at home on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. How do the Bucks grade out in the loss?
The Milwaukee Bucks are better than the Philadelphia 76ers, but Monday afternoon is a great example of why the teams play the games. The 76ers won by nine points in a game where they battled the Bucks since the beginning.
No matter how good he is, one player should not be able to will a team that weak to victory. Milwaukee didn’t put forth their best effort, and it showed. Embiid deserves tons of credit, but the Bucks have to execute better than that going forward.
To see which players should be the ones doing more, we’ll go through each of them and grade everybody who played. After that Jason Kidd gets a grade too, and then the 76ers find out how they did as well.
Dec 15, 2016; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) gets some hang time over Chicago Bulls guard Rajon Rondo (9) after dunking a basket in the third quarter at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Antetokounmpo scored 30 points to help the Bucks beat the Bulls 108-97. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Malcolm Brogdon was decent against the 76ers. He scored 11 points, but in an uncharacteristic showing it took the rookie 11 shots to get there. He also posted six assists, two rebounds and two steals, while putting up just one turnover. If Brogdon hadn’t been so impressive over the past month this would be a nice performance from a rookie, but he’s somehow already got higher standards than this game.
If Tony Snell recorded five points in the woods and no one was around to hear it, would it make a sound? I’m not sure, but in a crowded arena nobody heard much from Snell on Monday. He dropped five points, four rebounds and an assist in nearly 30 minutes played. He was perfect from the field and from beyond the arc, which is easier when you take two total shots.
Giannis Antetokounmpo was carrying the Bucks as high as he could for most of the first half, but unfortunately had to sit for much of the second half with foul trouble. Without him, things did not go well for Milwaukee. Giannis ended the night with 23 points, six rebounds, two assists, two steals and three blocks, in a freakish performance. He fouled out late in the fourth quarter, partly thanks to Embiid’s unstoppable presence inside.
Jabari Parker got going late, but unfortunately it was too late for the Bucks. Milwaukee could’ve used him more in the third quarter, when Giannis played just under six minutes, but Jabari scored just six points then. At least he tried to make things happen–he took seven shots in the third quarter. Jabari scored ten of his 23 points in the fourth quarter, but some of those came after the game was already essentially decided.
John Henson put up eight points, five rebounds, four assists and two blocks against the 76ers in 26 minutes played. The added playmaking was nice to see from Henson, as was him scoring more than four points in a game. Out of 38 played games this season, Henson has tallied less than five points 16 times. That’s not ideal production from a starting center, or a backup center for that matter.
Nov 17, 2016; Miami, FL, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Michael Beasley (9) dribbles the ball against the Miami Heat during the first half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Greg Monroe did typical Greg Monroe stuff against the 76ers, dropping 14 points, six rebounds, two assists, and a steal. He also turned the ball over three times, although he only committed one foul in 21 minutes played. Moose, as usual, took 13 shots to get his points. He also wasn’t capable of slowing down Embiid, although nobody else on the Bucks was either.
Just as Greg Monroe did some Greg Monroe stuff, Matthew Dellavedova did some Matthew Dellavedova stuff against the Sixers. He recorded eight points, four assists, one rebound and one steal in 21 minutes played. Delly, and the rest of the Bucks, might benefit from him being re-inserted into the starting five. Moose and Brogdon need to get the band back together!
Michael Beasley had a rare poor scoring game, shooting two-for-five and tallying just seven points. Beas continued to rebound effectively though, grabbing six boards to go along with his two assists. He was far from perfect though, as Beasley turned the ball over twice and committed three fouls in his 26 minutes played. You can’t expect Beasley to drop 20 every game, but with how he had been going recently it’s hard not to sometimes.
In a very off-brand performance from Jason Terry, he scored a number of points not divisible by three. JET ended the game with five points on Monday, which was all he did aside from somehow blocking a shot. Terry also committed three fouls, which is part of his usefulness to the Bucks. Terry plays a fair amount of minutes, but never enough to foul out. If Terry is in and somebody needs to stop a fast break or an easy bucket, you can bet he’ll be trying to do that. Veteran presence is usually invisible, but sometimes you can see it if you squint hard enough.
Two minutes, one assist. There was talk of Rashad Vaughn wanting to become good enough at passing to become a point guard–with 18 assists per 36 minutes on Monday, he’s clearly getting there.
One minute, one rebound. Wow, 36 rebounds per 36 minutes for Plumlee against the Sixers–what a performance! This guy is definitely worth $50 million.
In four minutes, Mirza Teletovic somehow found a way to take three shots. He missed them all. He did grab two rebounds, and somehow foul twice, before getting pulled out. It’s almost impressive to do all of that in four minutes–Mirza plays like an NBA 2k MyPlayer.
Dec 30, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Milwaukee Bucks head coach Jason Kidd in the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center. The Minnesota Timberwolves beat the Milwaukee Bucks 116-99. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
There are a few things I didn’t like about what Jason Kidd did during the 76ers game, but the first might be the most important. As Adam McGee has been tweeting, Malcom Brogdon and Greg Monroe aren’t getting enough minutes together. They shared the floor for just two minutes on Monday, the second time in a row they barely got to see each other. So much was made out of how good they are as a tandem, so why separate them? It may be time for Delly to start again, to reunite those two and prevent the bench from being blown out. Also, making Giannis sit out in foul trouble in the second half is something I don’t like. There’s risk there, but I’d rather see Giannis take on the challenge of playing without fouling then see the Bucks lose while he’s watching from the bench.
Jan 3, 2017; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) reacts after being fouled against the Minnesota Timberwolves during the second quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
The Philadelphia 76ers are a team of one man, and that man was incredible on Monday. I was as close to typing a swear word on a BTBP article as I ever have been right there, so imagine one of your choosing in front of the word incredible as an amplifier. Joel Embiid dropped 22 points, 12 rebounds, two assists, two steals and five blocks in just 28 minutes played. The only other Sixer to score more than 12 points was Dario Saric, who managed 17 of them plus nine rebounds. The team was outscored by nine with Saric on the floor, while in Embiid’s time they beat the Bucks by 13 points. Even though he threw shots at Milwaukee, this dude probably should be an All-Star.