Milwaukee, WI – Monta Ellis came two rebounds shy of a triple-double on Wednesday, posting 17 points, 11 assists and eight boards as the Milwaukee Bucks earned a wire-to-wire 98-85 victory over the Sacramento Kings at Bradley Center.
"He really moved the ball around well," Bucks head coach Scott Skiles said of Ellis.
Brandon Jennings poured in a game-high 19 points and Luc Mbah a Moute added 17 points on 6-of-10 shooting and six rebounds for the Bucks, who have won three straight on the heels of a two-game slide.
Ersan Ilyasova donated 16 points on 7-of-11 from the field and 14 rebounds off the bench, while Marquis Daniels contributed 10 points and six boards in the triumph.
Tyreke Evans netted a team-high 17 points and grabbed seven boards, while John Salmons added 16 points for the Kings, who have lost back-to-back games after a three-game run of positive results.
Aaron Brooks gave 10 points and six assists in the loss.
"We took too many shots that were contested," Kings head coach Keith Smart said.
The contest remained close early as a jumper by Jason Thompson pulled the Kings within 5-4, but Milwaukee responded with seven straight points to jump out to a 12-4 lead with just over eight minutes to go in the first quarter.
Milwaukee stayed in front for the duration of the frame and Ellis put an exclamation point on the session by hitting a 43-foot heave at the buzzer, giving the Bucks a 29-19 lead after one.
Sacramento battled back in the second quarter, using a 13-3 outburst, capped by an 8-foot jumper from Isaiah Thomas, to tie the game at 32 with 6:02 to go before halftime.
But, with the game tied at 34 and 5:47 to go before the break, the Bucks finished the half with a 15-5 run to head into the locker room with a comfortable 49-39 lead.
Salmons got the Kings off to a good start in the third stanza with an easy layup which sparked a 9-2 burst for the visitors, cutting the deficit to 51-48 with 7:37 to go in the third frame.
However, Milwaukee kept the Kings at arm's length and went into the final 12 minutes with a 68-62 advantage.
Milwaukee put the game away in the final frame, holding the Kings to just 9- of-24 from the floor in the session.
The Bucks began the fourth with an 11-2 burst to extend the lead to 79-64, and Ellis capped his big night with a corner 3-ball, giving the Bucks their largest lead of the night at 18.
Sacramento had won 10 of the previous 15 matchups as the visitor in this series ... Kings center DeMarcus Cousins missed the contest due to a one-game suspension handed down by the NBA earlier on Wednesday ... Ellis' 43-footer was the longest made FG by a Bucks player since Jodie Meeks hit a 50-footer on Nov. 14, 2009 vs. Golden State.