Cleat Geeks

Flat Third Quarter Dooms Bucks

paytonbucks_760_012915Another night for the Milwaukee Bucks and another horribly flat third quarter resulting in another loss 114-90 this time to the Orlando Magic on Friday night in Orlando.

The problems actually began at the tail end of the second quarter. As a small Bucks lead was turned into a six point deficit in the closing minutes of the quarter. The Magic closed the second quarter on 13-5 run to put the Bucks in the small half time hole.

Then the third quarter came. It has been an ugly quarter for most of the games this season and this Friday night was no exception. The Magic shot 13 of 16 in the quarter including six of six on three pointers. The Magic shot 81% in the quarter. The Magic put up 37 points in the quarter and won the quarter by 15.

Game. Set. Match.

Many games this season have followed the same tract. Reasonably close first portion of the game followed by a imploding second or third quarter followed by a latter portion of the game largely filled by garbage time with many bench guys getting the majority of the minutes.

ORLANDO, FL -  JANUARY 29: Jerryd Bayless #19 of the Milwaukee Bucks shoots against the Orlando Magic during the game on January 29, 2015 at Amway Center in Orlando, Florida . NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2015 NBAE (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images)

The underlying issues tonight were also quite familiar. The Magic knocked down 12 three pointers to the Bucks eight. This statistic is deceptive as the Bucks closed the distance on that statistic behind several three pointers from Jerryd Bayless in the fourth quarter.

Turnovers were again a big problem as the Bucks had 22 on the night nine of them from their primary two point guards. Making that issue was the Magic turned those 22 turnovers into 32 points while the Bucks were only able to get 18 points off the Magic 19 turnovers. Michael Carter Williams had only three points compared to five turnovers. He also had problems with Elfrid Payton who had 22 points and 10 assists.

The bottom line is this Bucks team is not giving a 48 minute effort on the defensive end of the floor and on the offensive end they are turning the ball over way to often to stay in games.

The Bucks team lead in scoring was shared between Giannis and Bayless with 17 each. Former Buck Tobias Harris was right behind Payton for the Magic with 19 points.

The Bucks play in Charlotte Sunday afternoon.

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