Reigning NBA champion Milwaukee Bucks has seven road trips this season in which they play at least three games and the Journal Sentinel will be there for most of them. With such long and varied journeys, not every note, quote or interesting piece makes its way to publication. So after each of those trips, the Bucks beat writer Jim Owczarski to summarize the week he was on the road, on and off the field.
November 7: 101-94 loss to Washington
November 8:Visit to the White House
November 9: Victory 118-109 against Philadelphia
November 10: 112-100 victory over New York
November 12: Loss 122-113 (OT) in Boston
November 14: Loss 120-100 from Atlanta
Take with you
On paper, the Bucks are an average team after 14 games. They are not completely healthy. But surprisingly, their performance during the trip makes me think that this team will be really dominant once the whole group is together and in their proper roles.
Yes, you can not expect health, but I guess – and this team has given Utah, New York, Washington and Boston everything they could afford with bench players in the starting lineup and deep bench players in rotation. important. It is not hard to imagine once the top five are together and the bench is settled, they will be playing top level basketball.
Mom is talking about Brook Lopez
Brook Lopez is with the team and is engaged on the sideline, but that seems to be all the Bucks center can currently do after he lost his 13th game in a row on Sunday with what is officially called “back pain” in injury reports.
When asked what specifically did not go with the 33-year-old center at the start of the trip to Washington on November 7, Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said, “I don’t think I can say that accurately.”
“We have to keep working with him and give him some time to do it right.”
At the end of the trip to Atlanta, Budenholzer was asked if Lopez had made any progress at all towards returning.
“You hope there is always progress, even if it is small,” Budenholzer said. “I think there is progress. He has done a few things and is definitely in a routine. “I would say there has been progress, but I think it continues to be something that is going slowly.”
On November 1, Budenholzer had said that Lopez was able to do “good things” in the weight room, but as for the big man moving into any kind of work in court at the end of the trip, Budenholzer said on November 9 that “I have nothing to add to what he is or is not doing at this stage.”
The last time Lopez lost more than 10 games in a season was in 2013-14, when he underwent leg surgery at the end of the season after playing in 17 games for the Brooklyn Nets. In the same year, Lopez suffered what was called a back strain.
In 2011-12 he played only five games after breaking his right leg and suffering a severe ankle sprain.
Before playing his first season at Stanford, Lopez underwent surgery for a swollen back disc in September 2006.
Donte DiVincenzo does full-time work in court
In Atlanta, Bucks goalkeeper Donte DiVincenzo was running up and down the field before the game, planting his ankle repaired with surgery and generally doing more work than has been seen to date.
“He is doing very, very well with his rehabilitation,” Budenholzer said. “His work ethic, his discipline, his desire to come back has been off the lists. Of course you know how we feel about the sports performance team, the boys are great. He is doing very well. I still “I think he is still very far away. After all, this is the reality, but he is doing very, very well.”
DiVincenzo tore a ligament in his left ankle in the Bucks playoff series in the first round against Miami in late May.
De’Vontes Cobbs representing Milwaukee in Atlanta
De’Vontes Cobbs grew up in Milwaukee watching Jordan Poole, Kevon Looney and Diamond Stone become names for themselves as high school students and then went on to draft in the NBA, seeing a dream that he could do the same.
To try and achieve that dream, Cobbs is doing it in a different way from his predecessors. He chose to drop last year’s high school and college offers to play professionally in Atlanta with Overtime Elite, a new league that has attracted teens from across the country to start their careers early.
So while the Cobbs basketball path has taken him out of the Midwest – he has moved from Arizona to California, back to Arizona and now Atlanta – he said Cream City is still in his heart.
“It’s my hometown – I’m always coming back,” he told the Sentinel Journal as he sat in the Extime Elite workout. “People say where are you from, I say Milwaukee. “Everyone is asking where it is, I say yes, we are a real small town, but many of us have a lot of potential that stands out.”
Minutes have fluctuated for Rodney Hood
After missing most of training camp and the first three games of the regular season with a leg injury, Rodney Hood appears to be working to get back in shape in late October, playing 18 minutes of the season. high in San Antonio on October 30th. But after playing 16 minutes in Detroit (November 2) and against New York (November 5) he did not play at all in Washington and Philadelphia.
“It’s a little harder to start with what most would consider our two scorers together in Jrue (Holiday) and George (Hill) and we played with Justin (Robinson) some,” Budenholzer said before the Knicks match. “There was a bit of a tip there. But I think Rodney is someone who will help us and we think he is important. I think we will understand.”
Hood played six minutes at Madison Square Garden against the Knicks on Nov. 10, 12 minutes against Boston and 17 minutes against Atlanta. He scored three points in each match.
Muppet Sam the Eagle moves Brook Lopez
At the White House on November 8, Brook Lopez saw an empty presidential podium and recited part of a speech in Gettysburg.
So what happened there, Brook?
“I think she just flowed inside me, you know?” he said with a little laugh outside James Brady’s press conference room in Washington on November 8th. “Surely, in the spirit of Sam the Eagle and the Fozzie Bear, two great Americans, I think a little bit of America is in our hearts and it just grabbed at me at that moment and came out. I think it probably would have happened to you. “You guys are in the same situation if you’re up there on that podium in front of the White House. It’s just natural.”
He said it
“I think it’s a great fit here. I feel like I can play very well with Giannis, Khris and Jrue. I feel like I found my place in the NBA, I figured out how to defend at an NBA level, I figured out how to shoot threes and get up with beautiful, quality looks, move around the ball, how to do intangible things, find of proper appearance in offense when it’s not me who shoots a threesome. I just feel like it’s a very good fit here and a place where I can be really good. Of course, the better we are, the better I will play. I think this is my (explanatory) way – the better the team does, the better I will do. ” – Grayson Allen for finding a home in Milwaukee.
Wide open three-pointers Grayson Allen is getting into the game season going to Atlanta, easily mostly in the NBA. His previous career record was 3.5 per game last season in Memphis.
Total games lost so far by starters * Giannis Antetokounmpo (1), Jrue Holiday (6), Khris Middleton (8) and Brook Lopez (13).
The last time the Bucks had this kind of record after 14 games, when they were 6-8 on November 25th. They finished 42-40 that season before losing to Toronto in the first round of the playoffs.
* From the beginning of the season it was known that Donte DiVincenzo would lose a considerable amount of time, so his recovery from ankle surgery is not counted.
NBA Road ha
In homage to the former defeated Bucks writer Matt Velazquez, I will list some of my favorite stops along the way – because we all have to eat, right?
On such a long road trip, this particular section can become powerless, so I’ll just hit a quick favorite in any location:
Washington: Fried Chicken Sandwich at Busboys and Poets? The boss kiss. Such food at a restaurant-bar-bookstore named after one of my favorite poets in Langston Hughes? My favorite on the trip.
Philadelphia: Yes, I got a Whiz Wit cheese steak at Ishkabibble’s original, but the roof was a nightstand at the oldest continuously functioning bar in town – McGillin’s Olde Ale House. It opened in 1860, and with such an old pub, in that city, one can only imagine the figures holding up a bench. (The fact that Lupe Fiasco’s “Kick, Push” was playing when I walked in didn’t hurt me, either!)
New York: Quick stop in the second of a time left just for lunch, so a nice cheeseburger from the District Tap House was enough. Congratulations.
Boston: I’m a sucker for a good breakfast and nostalgia for the “old media”, so the sausage and egg option at Tradesman Coffee Shop & Lounge is a must for me. Maple ketchup on a croissant bun gets it on top – and eating it with a cup of coffee next to the typewriter? It ‘s an atmosphere.
Atlanta: A visit from friends from Alabama made this part the best part of the trip for me, but the main point of the meal was a recommendation from a colleague, Eric Nehm at The Athletic. Sunday morning was spent on French toast at Home Grown. A small place with original art (available to buy!) On the walls, was a cozy – but popular – place for breakfast.
Summary of previous Bucks routes
October 23-25: (Miami, San Antonio, Indiana)