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Lakers drop close game to Milwaukee Bucks, 108-105

Professional BasketballSportsBasketballLos Angeles LakersMilwaukee BucksJordan HillNew York Knicks

Milwaukee Bucks 108 - Lakers 105 (end of regulation)

The only true win for the Lakers on Thursday night in Milwaukee against the Bucks was a loss.

Already out of the playoffs, the Lakers hurt their draft position with back-to-back wins over the Orlando Magic and New York Knicks. A 108-105 loss to the Bucks dropped the Lakers to 24-47, good for the sixth-worst record in the NBA.

The Lakers are still within range of the Utah Jazz (23-49) and Boston Celtics (23-48).

Brandon Knight led Milwaukee to a three-point win, scoring 30 points as the game's top scorer. The Bucks shot 55.7% from the field while taking 34 free throws to the Lakers' 18.

Former Lakers guard Ramon Sessions scored 22 with five assists, starting for a Milwaukee team missing Ersan Ilyasova (ankle), O.J. Mayo (ankle), Nate Wolters (hand), Larry Sanders (facial fracture) and Carlos Delfino (foot).

The Lakers played without Pau Gasol (vertigo), Kobe Bryant (knee), Jordan Farmar (groin) and Steve Nash (nerve root irritation).

Jordan Hill tied his career-high with 28 points, shooting 13-of-17 from the field with 16 rebounds. Nick Young gave the Lakers 17 off the bench. Chris Kaman (13 points) and Jodie Meeks (10) both scored in double figures.

The Lakers shot 49.4% from the field and 33.3% from three-point range. Both teams turned the ball over at a high rate with 20 from the Lakers and 19 from the Bucks.

With just 11 games left to play, the Lakers travel to Minnesota to play the Timberwolves (35-35) on Friday night.

The Bucks (13-59) host the Miami Heat (48-22) on Saturday.

Bucks 87 - Lakers 80 (end of third quarter)

The Bucks extended their lead in the third quarter to five points, continuing to shoot a stellar percentage from the field at 62.7%.

Brandon Knight scored 23 points on 10-16 shooting. Former Lakers guard Ramon Sessions scored 16 points, hitting 6-8 from the field. Khris Middleton contributed 14.

The Lakers' offense was also efficient from the field at 52.4%, although the 18 turnovers in 36 minutes might suggest otherwise.

Jordan Hill led the Lakers with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Chris Kaman gave the Lakers 13 points in 21 1/2 minutes. Nick Young contributed nine off the bench.

The Bucks shot 25 free throw attempts to the Lakers' 14 while the Lakers had a 29-20 rebounding advantage.

Bucks 55 - Lakers 53 (halftime)

The Bucks shot 60.6% in the first half against the Lakers, taking a two-point lead at the half.

Brandon Knight led Milwaukee with 13 points. Khris Middleton contributed 10.

Jordan Hill led all scorers with a first-half double-double, scoring 14 points with 11 rebounds. Chris Kaman scored nine while Nick Young gave the team seven off the bench.

The Lakers shot 50% from the field but turned the ball over 13 times. Milwaukee had 12 turnovers but took 15 free throws to the Lakers' seven.

Lakers 30 - Bucks 26 (end of first quarter)

The Bucks jumped out to an early 15-7 lead but it didn't last. The Lakers quickly responded with a 21-4 run, to climb ahead by nine points.

By the end of the first, the Lakers held onto a four-point lead.

Jordan Hill led the Lakers with eight points and seven rebounds in almost 10 minutes of play.

Chris Kaman arrived at the arena roughly 30 minutes before game time after traveling separately to Milwaukee due to personal matters in Los Angeles. The veteran center started, scoring seven points on 3-of-5 shooting.

The Bucks were led by Khris Middleton with 10 points, shooting 55.6% from the field as a team.

The Lakers shot 56.5% but turned the ball over eight times. Milwaukee had seven turnovers.

Pregame

The Lakers (24-46) visit the Milwaukee Bucks (13-58) on Thursday night.

The Bucks have lost eight-straight games while the Lakers have two victories in a row.

Neither Pau Gasol (vertigo) nor Steve Nash (nerve root irritation) is expected to play. The Lakers also don't have Kobe Bryant (knee) and Jordan Farmar (groin).

Ersan Ilyasova (foot) is out for the Bucks.

For a more in-depth breakdown, check out Preview: Lakers vs. Bucks

ALSO:

Pau Gasol recovering from vertigo, could miss next two games

Nick Young hits another 4-point play, is caught celebrating missed shot

Lakers set franchise-record with 51 points in third, drop Knicks, 127-96

Email Eric Pincus at eric.pincus@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.

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