Basketball / Sports

Bucks fall to Raptors

MILWAUKEE -- Even a breakout game from John Henson could not save Milwaukee from its record-setting 63rdloss of the season Saturday night.

Henson played 39 minutes off the bench with starting center Zaza Pachulia in foul trouble and responded with 23 points, nine rebounds and a career-best six assists.

But the Raptors held on in the final minutes for a 102-98 victory at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.

Milwaukee (14-63) lost its fifth straight game in breaking the previous franchise mark of 62 defeats, set by the 1993-'94 edition of the Bucks.

Khris Middleton added 20 points, and forward Jeff Adrien had 19 points and 12 rebounds. Brandon Knight had 15 points and Ramon Sessions contributed 13 points and 10 assists.

Greivis Vasquez, starting at point guard with Kyle Lowry sidelined by injury, led the Raptors (45-32) with 26 points and DeMar DeRozan added 23. Center Jonas Valanciunas added 17 points and 13 rebounds as Toronto stayed tied with the Chicago Bulls for the third-seeded spot in the Eastern Conference.

The Raptors hit all eight free throws they attempted in the final minute to secure the victory, including six by DeRozan.

"I haven't played like that in whew, a long time," Henson said. "Once I got my second wind in the second half, things went well.

"We played well under the circumstances."

Milwaukee had just three reserves available, including Henson. Rookie Giannis Antetokounmpo played 25 minutes off the bench and newcomer Chris Wright, signed to a second 10-day contract, played 16 minutes.

Henson was just two points shy of his season-high of 25 points posted in a game against the Chicago Bulls on Dec. 10.

"Zaza did pick up a couple early fouls, and being limited to one big off the bench, John had to play a lot of minutes tonight," Bucks coach Larry Drew said.

"I thought he did a good job. It was a tough matchup for him (against Valanciunas)."

Henson said he didn't know the Bucks had set a franchise record for defeats until he was informed about it by reporters after the game.

"It's not something you want to be associated with, but hopefully we can look back on it and say this was the turning point of what we did in this organization," Henson said.

"That's all you can hope for."

Valanciunas made a key three-point play late in the game after taking a pinpoint pass from Vasquez, a play that gave Toronto a 94-88 lead with 1:43 remaining.

The Bucks played a strong first half while taking a 56-47 lead at intermission.

Milwaukee shot 59 percent in the half and ended the second quarter on a 10-0 run.

But Toronto outscored Milwaukee, 28-20, in the third quarter as Vasquez scored 10 points to lead the Raptors' charge. The Raptors started the quarter with an 11-2 run, helped by a pair of three-pointers by Vasquez,

"Against good teams you have to come out with some fire at the start of the quarter," Drew said.

"We didn't do a good job of defending the three-point line. You look at all the other categories. We outscored them in the paint. We had more assists. There were a lot of good things we did do."

The Raptors hit 12 of 27 three-pointers, while the Bucks set a season-low by making 1 of 9 beyond the arc.

(c)2014 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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