Milwaukee Bucks guard Brandon Jennings has been the main facilitator lately and looks to lead his team back into the win column Friday night against the Golden State Warriors.
Jennings has 10 or more assists in each of his last three games, a feat he has accomplished for the first time in his career, and posted 12 assists to go along with 18 points in Wednesday's 117-101 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. Jennings had a career-high 19 assists on March 2 versus Toronto.
Monta Ellis scored 18 of his 22 points in the first half, while Ersan Ilyasova followed with 20 points for the Bucks, who fell to 4-2 since acquiring J.J. Redick from the Orlando Magic prior to the trade deadline.
"They put pressure on us the entire game," Bucks head coach Jim Boylan said. "In the fourth quarter we can usually stay with teams, but not tonight."
Bucks center and NBA blocks leader Larry Sanders scored 11 points and grabbed seven rebounds, but had his streak of at least one block end at 40 games. Redick had three points on a shot from downtown in less than 22 minutes.
The Bucks are in the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference standings and will close out their western jaunt Sunday at Sacramento.
Milwaukee is 14-15 away from home this season. Ilyasova (knee) is questionable Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Warriors couldn't solve the Houston Rockets in a 94-88 loss on Friday night. Steph Curry scored 24 points and Klay Thompson posted 22 for Golden State, which lost despite Houston's struggles from the floor in the closing minutes. The Warriors also experienced issues scoring the ball.
"Missed shots," Golden State coach Mark Jackson said. "At times we were careless and at times we were too passive...didn't put pressure on them. That was the difference...we settled."
David Lee had 16 points in the loss and was hobbled by a balky knee. The Warriors had won the first two tests on their seven-game homestand and fell to 20-8 as the host. They have dropped five of seven games overall.
The Warriors still have New York, Detroit and Chicago to play on the homestand.
Golden State lost the first meeting with the Bucks on the road on Jan. 26 this season as Ellis faced his former team and buried a late 3-pointer. Ellis and Jennings both had 20 points in that one and the Warriors were led by Curry's 26 points and seven assists.
Milwaukee has won six of seven and nine of the last 13 meetings with the Warriors, who have lost two of three as the host in this series.