National Basketball Association
Milwaukee at Portland
When: 10:00 PM ET, Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Where: Moda Center at the Rose Quarter, Portland, Oregon
The Milwaukee Bucks have reportedly lost rookie forward Jabari Parker for the rest of the season as their four-game road trip marches on Wednesday against the Portland Trail Blazers. The Bucks are prepared to announce that Parker has a torn ACL in his left knee after he was carried off the floor early in the second half on Monday against the Phoenix Suns and wasn’t around to see Khris Middleton bury a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Bucks a 96-94 victory. The Trail Blazers beat a San Antonio Spurs team Monday that was without three of its top four scorers.
These teams put on an entertaining show the last time they met in Portland, as 21 leads were exchanged in regulation before the Trail Blazers won in overtime. Portland leading scorer and rebounder LaMarcus Aldridge, who did not play in that meeting because of a lower back contusion, is playing especially well lately, putting up his eighth double-double in the last 10 games on Monday and the Bucks have little to counter with. On the flip side, Bucks 6-11 shooting guard Giannis Antetokounmpo should be a handful for Portland’s guards, which may require Aldridge to move up to guard Antetokounmpo.TV:
10 p.m. ET, FSN Wisconsin (Milwaukee), CSN Northwest (Portland)ABOUT THE BUCKS (13-12):
Parker is the only true small forward for the Bucks, so Middleton will likely fill his role in the starting lineup. Middleton has seen his role change significantly as he started 64 games for Milwaukee last season but opened this season on the bench and even sat out three games in November despite being fully healthy. He has scored 14 points in each of the last two games and is averaging 10.9 points in the last 10, more in line with his career scoring average of 10.4. ABOUT THE TRAIL BLAZERS (19-6)
: The mysterious offensive slide of Nicolas Batum has continued into December, as his scoring average sits at 8.8 after averaging between 12.4 and 14.3 points the last four seasons. He hasn’t strung together three straight games in double figures this season after hitting that mark in at least six straight games on four separate occasions last season. Batum's drop off is clearly reflected in his shooting percentages, as he’s hitting on 37.7 percent of his field goal tries this season after making 46.5 a year ago and his 3-point numbers have fallen from 36.1 to 23.7.BUZZER BEATERS
1. Portland C Robin Lopez is sidelined after breaking his right hand in the contest against San Antonio.
2. Portland is 11-2 at home this season, tied with the Memphis Grizzlies for the best home mark in the Western Conference.
3. Trail Blazers PG Damian Lillard is the first NBA player since Gary Payton in 1999-2000 to have at least 500 points, 150 assists, 125 rebounds and 60 or more 3-pointers in the first 25 games of the season. PREDICTION:
Trail Blazers 100, Bucks 97
Stats and Records