NBA

Budenholzer explains Holiday and Allen omissions in Bucks' Cavs defeat

By Sports Desk December 19, 2021

Mike Budenholzer explained he was just managing the minutes of absent duo Jrue Holiday and Grayson Allen as the short-handed Milwaukee Bucks went down to the in-form Cleveland Cavaliers.

Milwaukee were without regular starters Giannis Antetokounmpo, Donte DiVincenzo, Wesley Matthews and Bobby Portis as they have entered the NBA's Health and Safety protocols, while Khris Middleton is still out with a hyperextended left knee.

Both Holiday and Allen were available for selection but were not included as the defending NBA champions were routed 119-90.

However, head coach Budenholzer said that decision was simply because of the amount of minutes the duo played against the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday.

"I mean it's just those guys have played a lot," he said

"Those guys have given us so much including last night, they really, really laid it out – the whole group did. 

"I was just trying to be big picture, Grayson's a little under the weather. I'm really proud of the guys who played, they really competed."

Jordan Nwora impressed for the Bucks, leading the team's scoring with 28 points. Budenholzer says the task now is to improve other areas of his game.

"He's got that unique kind of scorers mentality, he can make or take tough shots, gets just enough separation, he's getting to the basket a little more, attacking a little more," he said.

"He's a very good scorer so it's just kind of trying to work on other parts of the game too. He's making progress there too so it's invaluable opportunities for him."

Defeat for the Bucks (19-13) leaves them fifth in the East, while a sixth straight win sees the Cavaliers up to third with a 19-12 record.

Two seasons ago, the Cavs only won 19 games in total while it took until April 8 to reach that point in 2020-21 – a campaign in which they finished 22-50.

Commenting on the Cavs' position, Darius Garland –  who had 22 points – said: "It's early. We don't get too far ahead of ourselves.

"It's been super fun. It's not just hero ball, everybody is contributing."

Related items

  • 18-year-old phenom Victor Wembanyama dominates again in second United States showcase 18-year-old phenom Victor Wembanyama dominates again in second United States showcase

    Victor Wembanyama put on a show for the NBA scouts in attendance for Metropolitans 92's 112-106 victory against G League Ignite on Thursday.

    Wembanyama, 18, is viewed as the best NBA prospect since LeBron James entered the 2003 draft straight out of high school, standing at seven-foot-four while demonstrating tremendous movement, ball handling and shooting touch. 

    After posting 37 points with five blocks while shooting seven-of-11 from three-point range in his United States debut on Tuesday, the future top overall draft pick backed it up with 36 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and four blocks in his second go.

    The exhibition series was conceived to allow Wembanyama to go head-to-head with fellow top prospect Scoot Henderson, who is signed to the G League. Unfortunately, a knee-on-knee collision between the two headline stars five minutes into the first quarter ended Henderson's night, although he is expected to make a quick recovery after being diagnosed with a bone bruise.

    Wembanyama will spend this season playing professionally in France's top league, and his agent confirmed the young phenom has no interest in shutting things down to protect his stock for the draft.

  • Warriors GM Bob Myers calls fight between Green and Poole 'unfortunate' Warriors GM Bob Myers calls fight between Green and Poole 'unfortunate'

    Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers called Wednesday's practice fight between Draymond Green and Jordan Poole "unfortunate".

    Initially reported by The Athletic, Wednesday's session turned heated and led to the two players becoming involved in an altercation.

    Yahoo Sports' Chris Haynes later claimed "league sources" said "there was a build-up stemming from team-mates noticing a change in Poole’s behaviour throughout camp with the guard on the verge of securing a lucrative extension".

    Speaking to the media on Thursday, Myers said fights in practice will always be a part of highly competitive team sports.

    "Everybody's fine," he said. "Look, it's the NBA, professional sports, these things happen. Nobody likes it. We don't condone it, but it happened.

    "Draymond apologised to the team this morning, Jordan was there in the room, I was there in the room with the team, the coaches, the players and we heard that.

    "It's unfortunate, I'm not going to deny it. It'll take some time to move through, but we'll move through it and move forward, and I'm confident that we will. 

    "We've got a good team, we've got good leadership, we've got some guys that have been here a long time.

    "This isn't our first thing that's happened, first sense of adversity; we've been through some of this before. Don't like going through it, but it's part of the NBA and it's part of sports."

    But Myers suggested reports of conflict relating to player contracts were wide of the mark, saying "[it's not about] who's getting paid and who isn't; I don't sense that".

    Green was not at practice on Thursday, with Myers adding "space is good" and that time is needed to cool things down. 

    Myers finished by saying any potential suspension for Green will be handled internally.

    Poole, 23, is coming off a career-best season in which he became a major asset for the championship-winning Warriors, averaging 17 points per game in the playoffs at over 50 per cent shooting while leading the NBA in free throw percentage (92.5 per cent).

    This upcoming season will be the last of his rookie contract, and he will be expecting an extension similar to that recently awarded to the Miami Heat's Tyler Herro, in the region of four years and $130million.

    Meanwhile, Green is also in a crucial contract year, as after the season he will have the ability to opt out of the final campaign of his four-year, $99m deal to seek what will likely be the last big extension of his career.

  • Omonia Nicosia 2-3 Manchester United: Rashford double and Martial strike gives Red Devils victory in Cyprus Omonia Nicosia 2-3 Manchester United: Rashford double and Martial strike gives Red Devils victory in Cyprus

    Substitutes Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial fired Manchester United to a 3-2 Europa League victory against Omonia Nicosia.

    The hosts took the lead after 34 minutes in Cyprus on Thursday when a quick counter-attack ended with Karim Ansarifard rifling into the roof of the net.

    But Erik ten Hag rang the changes for the second half and Rashford helped himself to a double either side of a Martial strike to give the Red Devils all three points, with Nikolas Panagiotou scoring a late consolation.

    United have now won six of their last seven Europa League away games and remain second in Group E, three points behind leaders Real Sociedad.

    Cristiano Ronaldo came close to scoring his 700th club goal with a fierce drive in the first half and Bruno Fernandes hit the crossbar. Fabiano made a great stop to tip Antony's effort wide at full stretch, before Omonia punished United for their profligacy.

    Tyrell Malacia was caught in possession and the hosts steamed forward on the break. Bruno perfectly played in Ansarifard, who fired past David de Gea.

    Rashford was introduced at half-time and levelled for United within eight minutes of coming on, latching onto a sublime Fernandes diagonal before cutting onto his right foot and smashing home.

    Martial put the visitors in front just a minute after making his way onto the pitch, as a clever Rashford flick teed him up to lash into the bottom corner.

    Ronaldo hit the woodwork late on, but provided an assist as his cross-shot picked out Rashford at the back post to tap in for his second.

    Omonia grabbed a goal back through Panagiotou, but United saw the game out to earn an important victory.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.