(Sports Network) – The Milwaukee Bucks hope to salvage the finale of a three- game western road trip on Thursday when they visit Oakland to take on the Golden State Warriors. After dropping the opener of its trek against the LA Clippers on Monday, Milwaukee fell again last night in the desert when Marcin Gortat came off the bench to score 19 points and grab 11 rebounds as Phoenix pulled away early to defeat the Bucks, 92-77.
Former Warrior Corey Maggette and Ersan Ilyasova each had 15 points Milwaukee, which was held to just 31.1 percent shooting and has dropped the two straight after a three-game win streak. Earl Boykins chipped in 14 points and Carlos Delfino scored 10 in the loss, the Bucks’ 23rd straight setback at Phoenix.
“The game was decided before the fourth quarter,” Boykins said. “The game was decided in the first half. When you play a team like Phoenix you can’t allow them to get out to a 20-point lead and try to fight back, they’re just too good of a team.”
The offensively challenged Bucks, who are last in the NBA in both scoring (91.6) and field-goal percentage (42.4) were without the services of star center Andrew Bogut against the Suns because of a bruised right knee. Milwaukee also announced Wednesday that veteran forward Drew Gooden will miss an additional four to six weeks with plantar fasciitis in his left foot.
The Warriors, meanwhile, improved to 1-3 on a lengthy eight-game homestand on Sunday when Stephen Curry scored 27 points, dished out seven assists and pulled down six rebounds, as Golden State handled the Utah Jazz, 96-81. Dorell Wright and Reggie Williams added 16 and 15 points, respectively, for the Warriors, who snapped a four-game overall skid. David Lee chipped in with 14 points and five rebounds.
“I don’t think tonight’s win was won on the offensive end, we didn’t score 115 points,” Lee said. “Monta (Ellis) played very good defense, had a bunch of loose balls. Tonight’s game was won on the defensive end. If we can play that way defensively then we’re going to make enough shots to win if we don’t then we move on to the next game.”
The Bucks have won four straight over Golden State and will be attempting to sweep the home-and-home season series between the two clubs for a second straight year.