Final
  for this game

Bucks-Nuggets Preview

Mar 20, 2010 - 6:37 AM By JEFF MEZYDLO STATS Senior Writer

Milwaukee (37-30) at Denver (47-22), 9:00 p.m. EDT

The Milwaukee Bucks have beaten some quality opponents during their recent run of success. A rare victory in Denver could be their biggest win.

Coming off a double-overtime victory, the Bucks look to avoid a fourth straight road loss to the Nuggets on Saturday night.

Brandon Jennings scored 35 points, John Salmons had 27 and Andrew Bogut added 21 with 11 rebounds as Milwaukee (37-30) beat Sacramento 114-108 Friday.

"A win like this is like a playoff game," said Jennings, who hit a career-high eight 3-pointers and recorded eight assists as Milwaukee improved to 2-0 in double-overtime games this season. "We just kept fighting."

The victory also was the 13th in 15 games for the Bucks, who are fifth in the Eastern Conference and in position to make the playoffs for the first time since 2005-06. Milwaukee has wins over playoff contenders Charlotte, Cleveland, Boston and Utah at home, and Miami on the road during that recent stretch.

After opening a three-game trip with a 101-93 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday, the Bucks avoided losing consecutive games for the first time since Jan. 16-18.

Though the Kings are near the bottom of the West standings, Friday's victory should give Milwaukee some momentum heading into Denver. The Bucks beat the Nuggets 108-102 at home on Nov. 11, but they've lost three in a row and 15 of 18 at Denver.

The Northwest Division-leading Nuggets (47-22) have won eight of nine overall and seven straight at home after beating New Orleans 93-80 on Thursday. Denver is 30-5 at the Pepsi Center this season, and averaging 114.3 points in its last three there against Milwaukee.

The Bucks didn't have a player the caliber of Jennings in any of those road contests versus the Nuggets. A top candidate for rookie of the year, Jennings is averaging 20.8 points in his last six contests, and had 32 with nine assists against Denver in November.

Salmons also has given the Bucks a boost, averaging 19.4 points in 15 games since being acquired in a trade with Chicago on Feb. 18. However, Salmons is averaging just 8.1 points in 18 career games against the Nuggets.

Denver's Carmelo Anthony had 32 points with 10 boards at Milwaukee in November, and is averaging 27.5 points in his last six contests against the Bucks. He scored 26 and had a career-high 18 rebounds Thursday for the Nuggets, who have held their last two opponents to fewer than 90 points.

With Kenyon Martin sidelined because of knee tendinitis, Anthony was a force on the boards while recording his ninth double-double of the season.

"It was awesome, man," said teammate Chauncey Billups. "(Anthony) has the ability to do that. I'm not saying he's an 18-rebound-a-night-guy but with his quickness and his explosiveness, most of the time he has an advantage on his defender."

It's uncertain if current Denver and former Milwaukee coach George Karl will return to the bench for this contest. Karl missed his sixth game Thursday - but his first at home - since beginning radiation and chemotherapy treatment for throat cancer a month ago.

The Nuggets are 5-1 under assistant Adrian Dantley.






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    Bucks 102, Nuggets 97  FinalMar 21 1:29 AM


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    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    MILWAUKEE 27 26 23 26 102
    DENVER 31 23 22 21 97 FINAL

    HIGH SCORERS: MIL - JOHN SALMONS 26, CARLOS DELFINO 21,
    ERSAN ILYASOVA 14
    DEN - CARMELO ANTHONY 29, CHAUNCEY BILLUPS
    29, J.R. SMITH 11

    Mar 20 11:37 PM
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    Bucks 95, Nuggets 94  4th - 1:58Mar 20 11:26 PM
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    Bucks 93, Nuggets 90  4th - 3:13Mar 20 11:20 PM
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    Bucks 91, Nuggets 88  4th - 4:11Mar 20 11:17 PM
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    Bucks 88, Nuggets 84  4th - 6:20Mar 20 11:11 PM
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    Bucks 81, Nuggets 78  4th - 10:13Mar 20 10:59 PM


  • NBA
    MILWAUKEE 76
    DENVER 76 END, 3RD QTR

    Mar 20 10:56 PM


  • NBA
    MILWAUKEE 53
    DENVER 54 HALFTIME

    Mar 20 10:13 PM
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    Bucks 53, Nuggets 54  HalfMar 20 10:13 PM


  • NBA
    MILWAUKEE 27
    DENVER 31 END, 1ST QTR

    Mar 20 9:40 PM