Butler breaks hand in Washington win
Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) – Caron Butler poured in 19 points and had
five rebounds before fracturing his right hand in the third quarter, as the
Washington Wizards trounced the Milwaukee Bucks, 121-107, at the Bradley
Butler left the game with 6:28 remaining in the third. The All-Star forward
is averaging 19.1 points and 7.4 rebounds per game.
“Unfortunately, Caron is probably going to be out for a long time, maybe the
season,” Wizards coach Eddie Jordan said. “We want to get further evaluation
and then come up with an appropriate answer with all the results.”
Gilbert Arenas scored 19 points and dished out nine assists for Washington,
which moved a half-game ahead of the defending world champion Miami Heat —
who lost earlier in the day at Detroit — for the top spot in the Southeast
Division. Jarvis Hayes chipped in with 17 points, and Darius Songaila had 15
for the Wizards, who are in the sixth spot in the Eastern Conference playoff
Maurice Williams scored 25 points for Milwaukee, which has dropped six
straight. Ruben Patterson finished with 19 points and 10 rebounds, and Charlie
Bell donated 18 points in a losing cause. The Bucks also got 10 points apiece
from Brian Skinner and Ersan Ilyasova.
“We’re playing one of the highest-powered teams in the league, with a lot of
different weapons,” Bucks coach Larry Krystkowiak said. “Their bench was
super-productive, had more energy than us.”
Milwaukee had a strong first quarter, using a 13-4 run, ignited by Bell’s
layup at the seven-minute mark to take a 27-17 lead. The spurt was capped by a
Williams’ jump shot at 3:48 and Milwaukee easily held its 10-point margin
through the buzzer and led 35-25.
Washington reversed its fortune in the second stanza, outscoring Milwaukee
32-16 en route to a 57-51 halftime edge.
Butler was apparently hurt when he tried to challenge a shot by Patterson.
“I’ll probably get an MRI on it tomorrow,” Butler said. “Right now, they’re
saying it’s a season-ending injury. We’ll see what happens. When I was getting
the cast put on, I saw the guys win the game, that meant a lot.”
The Bucks found themselves in a nine-point hole in the third, but kept the
pressure on, tying the game at 66 on Patterson’s dunk at 6:40. The Wizards
couldn’t pull away, however, and led 88-85 heading to the fourth.
It was all Washington down the stretch. Hayes had two three-pointers during a
10-1 burst at the midpoint that gave his squad a 106-93 edge with 6:36 to
Milwaukee never got closer than 12 the rest of the way, as the Wizards cruised
to the finish.
Washington is 13-23 on the road this season…This was the fourth and final
meeting of the campaign between the squads. The Wizards won three of the four
contests…Washington snapped a three-game slide in Milwaukee…The Bucks
played without leading scorer Michael Redd, who was out with left knee
pain…Center Dan Gadzuris returned for the Bucks after being out 23 games due
to a shoulder injury.