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Boykins, Bogut lift Bucks past Bobcats

Jan 15, 2007 - 10:26 PM CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Earl Boykins and Andrew Bogut proved to be a major headache for the Charlotte Bobcats.

Boykins scored 30 points and Bogut added a career-high 27 and 10 rebounds as the shorthanded Milwaukee Bucks stopped a season-high five-game losing streak with a 99-91 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats.

In his second game with Milwaukee since being acquired from Denver, the 5-5 Boykins - the smallest player in the NBA - relied on his outside shooting rather than his speed.

Boykins made 9-of-16 shots and converted all but one of his 10 free throws. He hit a 3-pointer with 4:01 remaining to give the Bucks the lead for good at 89-86, then added a shot in the lane for a 94-88 cushion with 1:46 to play.

"Today, just in terms of preparation, it was different," said Boykins, who was acquired in a trade with Denver four days ago. "Friday, I didn't have time to prepare the way I like to and didn't have the legs in the second half. But today I got a chance to actually prepare and get ready for the game, and that was the difference in terms of my play."

"Earl played very well," Bucks coach Terry Stotts said. "I think he was a little reluctant in Philly (on Friday) to try and score too much. We needed his points and he did a nice job executing the pick-and-roll."

Not intimidated by the presence of the 6-10 Emeka Okafor - who had a career-high 10 blocks in Friday's win at New York - Bogut did plenty of damage in the post.

In one of the best games of his young career, the 7-foot second-year center made 12-of-15 shots en route to his third straight double-double.

"I'm seeing more of the ball and getting more confident and just playing basketball as opposed to being one-dimensional and trying to do one thing," Bogut said. "I'm just reading the defense and playing basketball."

"Andrew, particularly in the first half, was very effective on the block," Stotts said. "That was probably the best game of his career. He did a little bit of everything. He kicked it out when he needed to and scored when he had the opportunity."

Charlie Bell and Ruben Patterson added 10 points apiece for the Bucks, who continue to play without injured starters Michael Redd, Charlie Villanueva, Mo Williams and Bobby Simmons.

The Bucks shot 47 percent (38-of-81) in improving to 8-0 all-time against the Bobcats.

Matt Carroll scored 20 of his 22 points in the first half for Charlotte, which failed in its bid to tie a franchise-record four-game winning streak.

"It was real simple today - we got outworked," Bobcats coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. "We had two guys score a combined 57 points (against us). Milwaukee did what we normally do in terms of work ethic. They just outworked us. We had a golden opportunity with a winnable basketball game but we didn't get it done. If we got outworked, then it's a coaching problem, and I'll accept that one."

The Bobcats also were done in by poor shooting. They shot just 39.5 percent (32-of-81).

Carroll was one of the few who had his touch. He made 7-of-10 shots in the first half, which ended with the Bobcats within 52-51. But he missed his only two shots after the break.

"I was feeling good, so I went into the second half with a lot of confidence, but I just didn't take as many shots and didn't get as many looks," Carroll said. "I think they were more aware of me, but I wouldn't say that was the reason why."

"In the first half, we lost (Carroll) him a little bit and Matt's too good of a shooter to let that happen," Stotts said. "In the second half, they tried to loosen him up off of screens, and we did a nice job of chasing him and Adam Morrison and not getting screened."

The Bobcats missed six of their first seven shots in the third quarter, which allowed the Bucks to open some breathing room. Boykins made a jumper and 3-pointer in a 13-2 surge that gave Milwaukee a 65-53 advantage.

Okafor, who had 17 points and 12 rebounds, made a jumper as the Bobcats answered with an 11-2 surge. They closed to 76-74 entering the final period.

Raymond Felton made two free throws and Okafor another short jumper, giving the Bobcats an 80-76 lead with 9:21 remaining.

Bell sank shot from the arc 18 seconds later to trigger a 13-6 surge that put the Bucks ahead for good.

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