MILWAUKEE (AP) — Bucks coach Jim Boylan was hardly in the mood to celebrate even though his team came back from a 12-point deficit in the fourth quarter.
Monta Ellis scored a season-high 39 points, including 25 in the fourth quarter, and Milwaukee rallied for a 115-109 over the Orlando Magic on Sunday.
Losers of three consecutive games coming into the matchup with the Magic, who own the second-worst record in the NBA, the Bucks trailed most of the way before Ellis took over in the fourth. He connected on all five of his 3-point attempts in the period, and his 25 points were the most by an NBA player in one quarter this season.
"Monta was pretty amazing there in the fourth quarter. I'm happy that we won the game, but I am really concerned with the way we are playing right now," Boylan said. "It's not good enough. We need to play better. Right now we are not a very good team. You can't rely on scoring 45 points in the fourth quarter in order to pull a game out at home."
The Bucks, who hold the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, are looking to improve their position heading into the season's final stretch.
"First of all, we are not in the playoffs," Boylan said. "If you play a casual kind of game without the intensity that is necessary to win, then you are going to lose. We need to turn it up and we need to be a serious team. Right now we are not playing like a serious team."
Boylan was especially critical of his team's effort on defense.
"The defensive end is where the problems are — period," he said. "We don't play any defense. We are not committed to it. We were very, very lucky to win this game."
Ellis' fourth-quarter scoring spree included a fast-break dunk off a slick pass from backcourt mate Brandon Jennings.
"It was just one of them days where you feel it and the crowd got into it," Ellis said. "My teammates had faith in me to give me the ball at the time and I was able to knock the shots down. I didn't think about it. I just shot the ball."
The Bucks ended the game on a 30-12 run, handing the Magic their eighth loss in 10 games.
The Magic were up 97-85 midway through the final quarter, but back-to-back 3s by Ellis cut the lead to six points. The dunk by Ellis later in the quarter brought the Bucks to 101-99.
Orlando's Arron Afflalo connected on a 3 to make it 104-99 before Ellis made another 3-pointer to again slice the lead to two. The teams exchanged baskets until an Orlando missed shot led to Ersan Ilyasova's layup at the other end off an assist from Jennings to tie it at 108.
Magic rookie Mo Harkless made one of two free throws to put Orlando ahead 109-108 with 1:08 remaining.
On the ensuing possession, Larry Sanders made a hook shot to put the Bucks in front 110-109. Jameer Nelson missed a shot and Ellis sank his fifth 3 of the quarter to put the Bucks up 113-109 with 13 seconds remaining.
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