Wednesday night’s 107-102 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers should be relatively fresh in the minds of the Milwaukee Bucks this afternoon as they seek some payback at Fiserv Forum.
The Bucks (54-19) will retire the No. 8 worn in the late 1970s and early ’80s by Marques Johnson at halftime of the game.
Johnson, now an analyst as part of the Bucks’ television team, was one of the great players during a great era for the team. The No. 3 overa;; pick in the 1977 draft, he was traded in the summer of 1984 to the San Diego Clippers in a deal that brought Terry Cummings, Ricy Pierce and Craig Hodges to the Bucks. For where he ranks on the Bucks all-time lists, the honor is long overdue.
The current Bucks are looking for their 55th victory and to reduce their magic number to five for clinching the first seed in the Eastern Conference.
Giannis Antetokounmpo is listed as questionable but is reported to be warming up as he normally would. Antetokounmpo suffered a sprained ankle that forced him to miss games Tuesday and Wednesday. He returned Friday in a 116-87 victory over Miami Friday night, but he aggravated the ankle in the second quarter.
Reports also came out Sunday indicating that Pau Gasol will miss approximately a month with ankle problems.
The Bucks already are without Malcolm Brogdon (foot) and Nikola s(left thumb).
The Cavaliers (19-54) are rebuilding after LeBron James left in free agency last summer to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers. They were led by Collin Sexton and Jordan Clarkson in Wednesday’s victory over the shorthanded Bucks, who only had nine available players.