Free throw misses kill the Bucks

Chris Paul did look pudgy, but he’s still pretty darn good.  Tonight he well outproduced both of his counterpart Bucks PGs — sophomore Brandon Jennings and veteran Keyon Dooling.  Dooling had a terrible Bucks debut.  Jennings wasn’t terrible, he just wasn’t nearly as productive as Paul.

The game was basically dead even save for free throw proficiency.  The Bucks big men could not make their throws, especially Andrew Bogut, and that was basically the margin of defeat for Milwaukee.  Outside of that, the two teams played nearly identical basketball on Opening Night.

Andrew Bogut, who looks like Rob Zombie, had a very productive game even with the bad foul line performance.  And coming off his gruesome injury of last season, that was reassuring.  Carlos Delfino was his normal brilliant self as well.  He had one of his patented “silent but deadly” statistical games, rebounding, doing nothing wrong, and producing 19 points on only 12 scoring possessions used.

Drew Gooden also had a productive game, but I suspect that when I put the numbers together tomorrow morning his production will have been nullified by his counterpart Mark David West, who wore Gooden out all night.  Drew needed to do a better job of defensing him.

But outside of Paul and West, no one really hurt the Bucks that badly.  The problem is, no one outside of Delfino and Bogut really hurt the Hornets that badly, either.

Maggette was threatened to have a huge night when he came roaring off the bench, scoring 10 points in the opening quarter, but he kind of went away after that.

John Salmons, on the other hand, was just terrible.  He did nothing positive, except to provide an abject example of why players need the exhibition season.

Ersan Ilyasova was really bad, too.  And he didn’t have the “I missed the preseason” to fall back on either.

Lastly, as I mentioned, Keyon Dooling was really, really bad.  He was the worst performer on the Milwaukee Bucks, maybe the worst performer on either team.  He really disappointed me.

A couple of final thoughts.  Bucks rookie Larry Sanders illustrated the dangers of reading too much into the “+/-” statistic provided in the NBA’s official box score.  According to “+/-“, the Bucks were +11 in the five short minutes Sanders was on the floor in the first quarter, but Sanders really did nothing to help produce that outcome.  He didn’t score or rebound, and he only blocked one shot.  He was just kind of on the floor at the time the Bucks made their mini-run… sort of like a basketball version of Forrest Gump.

Finally, what ever happened to that former number one pick Emeka Okafor?  I thought he played for the Hornets, but he didn’t provide any tangible evidence of that tonight.  Bogut is so much better than him now, its silly.   I didn’t see Okafor do anything except “catch” a couple of defensive rebounds.  You have to do better than that, especially with a playmaker like Chris Paul on your team.  Okafor’s game has clearly gone in the crapper.

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6 Responses to “Free throw misses kill the Bucks”

  1. palamida Says:

    That would be David West, but it’s all good.
    Looking at Ridnour’s line tonight in his Minny Debut and comparing it with Dooling’s is a bit painful.

  2. Blake Says:

    Eh. Our team will continue to mesh as the season goes on. Hopefully Salmons will pick his game up against the T’Wolves and the horrible Corey Brewer.

    • tywill33 Says:

      I kind of have the same attitude as you. I didn’t think the Bucks looked horrible. At the same time, they didn’t look great either. Skiles sounded very unimpressed. Maybe he was exaggerating to make a point, who knows?

      The guy who might keep the Bucks in the game with his poor shooting on Friday night is Beasley.

  3. TC from Racine Says:

    a couple things I figure: first, whoever told Emeka Okafor it’d be a good idea to shave his head needs glasses. not everybody can pull off baldness like Jordan or Sam Jackson. more notably, Salmons tonight reminded me of Redd circa last December…granted, somehow not as horrid as that was, but still crappy to watch.

  4. Seattle Bucks Says:

    Time for Bogut to start shooting free throws underhanded.

    • tywill33 Says:

      That’s what I was thinking last night! He’s trying too hard to have “proper form”. Just get the damn ball through the damn circle! Its not as hard as guy’s make it out to be! And Rick Barry proved that the underhanded backspin was the best method

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