8:30 PM ET, October 31, 2009
BMO Harris Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI
Jennings turns it on in second half as Bucks pull away from Pistons
Bucks coach Scott Skiles, known to be cautious with his praise, clearly liked what Jennings did in just his second NBA game.
• Brandon Jennings followed up a strong NBA debut by scoring a team-high 24 points against the Pistons. Twenty-one of his 24 points came in the second half.
• The Bucks are 6-0 all-time at home on Halloween and 13-3 overall on Oct. 31.
• Ben Gordon (26 points) has scored 22-plus in each of his first three games with the Pistons.
• Hakim Warrick had 21 points off the bench for the Bucks, outscoring the Pistons' bench 21-14 by himself.
-- ESPN Stats & Information
"He came out in the third quarter and gave us a huge lift," Skiles said. "[He] got in the zone there for a little while and once again showed you another element of his game."
Jennings shot 9 of 16, had three assists and three steals, including a key steal down the stretch that enabled the Bucks to push their lead to 95-83 with 1:07 left.
"[He] got his team going, too, which is as, or more, important," Skiles said. "We see a lot in the Cousins Center. We've seen him do a lot of things."
Doing it at the Bucks' practice facility is one thing, but on the home court against a team that has dominated Milwaukee is another.
The Pistons had won nine of 11 against the Bucks, including five of six at the Bradley Center before Jennings, Warrick and the reserves went to work.
Detroit led 49-38 at the half and looked headed to their second victory of the season. That was before Skiles changed up the game plan to free up Jennings and everybody else.
"We went into our pick-and-roll game where we just spread the floor and let him go to work," Skiles said. "And, he went to work."
So did the Bucks' reserves who outscored the Pistons' bench 52-14.
"We were working on cutting the lead down as much as possible, but it wasn't just me," Jennings said. "I thought everyone contributed well in the third quarter to go on a nice little run."
Trailing 49-38, the Bucks opened the third with a 28-8 run sparked by Jennings' 16 points and two steals and Warrick's six. They led 66-57 with 2:14 to go in the quarter.
"We gave them life in the third period," Pistons coach John Kuester said. "We've got to come out with a certain amount of energy that had when we left the court, and we haven't done that the last two games."
Jennings picked up his fourth foul with two minutes left and went to the bench, but Milwaukee stayed on the attack and pushed the lead to 74-63 heading into the final period.
"We just kept chipping away at the lead and next thing you know, we had the lead and we never looked back," Jennings said.
Tayshaun Prince's 11-foot jumper from the baseline pulled the Pistons to 81-77 with 5:51 to play, but Warrick made two free throws and Jennings hit a runner in the lane as the Bucks went up by eight.
Playing with five fouls over the final three minutes, Jennings darted through the Pistons' defense and kept the Bucks from failing down the stretch.
He left to a standing ovation when Skiles took him out of the game.
Richard Hamilton missed his second game with a sprained right ankle. He did not play in the Pistons' 91-83 loss at home to Oklahoma City on Friday. The Pistons won their opener at Memphis.
Charlie Villanueva had four points in the opening quarter in his first regular-season appearance as a Piston after spending the previous three seasons with the Bucks. He got going in the fourth quarter when he hit two 3s and a jumper and finished with 12 points. He signed as an unrestricted free agent with Detroit in July.
"We were moving the ball great in the first half," Villanueva said. "That wasn't the case in the second half."
Michael Redd and Andrew Bogut, who were brought along slowly during the preseason, returned to the Bradley Center for the first time since each sustained season-ending injuries in January that crushed the Bucks' hopes for their first playoff appearance since the 2005-06 season.
Redd, who scored 17 points Friday night, tore ligaments in his left knee against Sacramento Jan. 24. He missed the last 35 games of the season.
Redd had nine points against the Pistons, but left during the third quarter with left knee soreness. The Bucks said that taking him from the game was more of a precaution and that he was day to day.
Bogut, who missed the final 31 games with a sore lower back, had six points and eight rebounds.
Kuester said that Hamilton, who did not make the trip, was day to day. ... Bucks G/F Carlos Delfino was back after serving a one-game suspension for his role in a preseason fight with Pistons F Austin Daye. ... Last season's "American Idol" finalist Danny Gokey sang the national anthem in front of his hometown crowd and then entertained them at halftime.
MILWAUKEE - OCTOBER 31: Brandon Jennings #3 of the Milwaukee Bucks draws an offensive foul against Rodney Stuckey...
Team Stat Comparison
|FGM-FGA||31-71 (.437)||32-78 (.410)|
|3PM-3PA||4-16 (.250)||8-19 (.421)|
|FTM-FTA||19-25 (.760)||24-33 (.727)|
|Fast Break Points||4||16|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||28 (0/0)||29 (0/0)|
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