Portland At Milwaukee
When: 8:00 PM
ET, Wednesday, December 7, 2016
Where: BMO Harris Bradley Center, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The Portland Trail Blazers are starting to roll while discovering some balance on the offensive end and will go for their fourth straight win when they visit the Milwaukee Bucks in the second of a five-game road trip on Wednesday. The Trail Blazers leaned heavily on the scoring prowess of point guard Damian Lillard early and started to fall off when defenses adjusted, and more scoring options of late is putting them back in the win column.
Lillard still put up 30 points in a 112-110 win over Chicago to start the road trip on Monday but five other players scored in double figures and the bench delivered 32 points. "I think the last few games our minds have been right," Lillard told reporters. "All year long we've been struggling to put games together. We've been really inconsistent. We've been building on each game." The Bucks are on the uptick as well but had a four-game winning streak come to an end with a 97-96 home loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Monday. "They are young, athletic and hungry," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters of Milwaukee. "They play hard and they play physically. (Head coach) Jason (Kidd) has done a great job with them."
TV: 8 p.m. ET, CSN Northwest (Portland), FSN Wisconsin (Milwaukee)
ABOUT THE TRAIL BLAZERS (12-10): Portland's strong play over the last few games includes a resurgence from reserve guard Allen Crabbe. The Trail Blazers signed Crabbe to a four-year, $75 million contract extension over the summer but watched him score in double figures just four times in the first 12 games in November. The Cal product broke out of the funk with 15 points in a win over Indiana to close out November and scored 16 against Miami on Saturday before going one better with 17 points, five rebounds and two steals in Monday's triumph.
ABOUT THE BUCKS (10-9): Milwaukee small forward Giannis Antetokounmpo is the star of the team and was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week on Monday. "He's not just an athlete anymore," Popovich said of Antetokounmpo." He's not just a phenomenon with his length and athleticism. He has learned how to play the game." Antetokounmpo battled foul trouble and was forced to sit most of the fourth quarter on Monday but still finished with 22 points and 11 rebounds for his eighth game this season with at least a double-double.
1. Trail Blazers SF Al-Farouq Aminu (calf) returned to the lineup after a 13-game absence on Monday and delivered three points on 1-of-3 shooting in 17 minutes.
2. Bucks swingman Tony Snell is 6-of-28 from 3-point range in the last five games.
3. The teams split two meetings last season, with Milwaukee earning a 90-88 win on its home floor.
PREDICTION: Bucks 109, Trail Blazers 105
Stats and Records
Milwaukee Off vs
103.3 Points For
112.4 Points Against