Miles Bridges kept up his hot run of play by splashing an early triple to open the game’s scoring. It kicked off what ended up being a very competitive, back and forth quarter with most teams generating a lot of offense at the basket. A modest Bucks run near the end of the period gave them a five point edge into the second quarter.
The Hornets “lost their way” in the second quarter according to head coach James Borrego. The Hornets had almost as many turnovers (5) as they did made field goals (6). The ball movement that’s required for the Hornets to generate offense in their current state just wasn’t there. They made six-of-19 shots in the period and only mustered 17 points. At the half, they trailed 62-45.
Credit to the Hornets though, they did not fold under such a large deficit over a superior team. For as cold as the Hornets were in the second quarter, they were just as hot in the third. PJ Washington got it going by scoring the Hornets first 12 points in the quarter. Even with his hot scoring, the Hornets deficit grew as large as 19 in the frame. But the rest of the team followed suit after Washington before too long. They made 67% of their shots from the field and hit their 3-pointers at the same rate. The deficit was narrowed to as little as six in the quarter, and was just seven going into the fourth.
The Bucks reeled off several quick baskets and looked like they were going to run away with the contest, but the Hornets again responded with a run of their own to get back into the game. Devonte’ Graham hit two pairs of free throws at different points to get the game within four a couple of times, but that’s as close as the Hornets could get. Their last hopes were dashed by a Brook Lopez hook and Khris Middleton 3-pointer on consecutive possessions to put the Bucks up nine with under 90 seconds to go.
Miles Bridges continued his scorching April, finishing with 21 points, 10 rebounds, and six assists. Devonte’ Graham chipped in 25 points and six assists, while PJ Washington scored 18 of his own. Terry Rozier never really got going and finished with just eight points on 4-of-17 shooting.
The Hornets will try to get back on track on Wednesday night against a Boston Celtics team that will be looking to avenge a laugher of a loss to the Hornets on Sunday.