Game 4: Bucks shock Hawks 111-104 to even series

The Hawks a very good team — but they’re not great. During the regular season, the Bucks were playing close to the level the Hawks were before losing center Andrew Bogut to injury. Yet the Bucks are showing big-time pride and stepping up to put some scare into Atlanta.

The AP reports:

Bucks shock Hawks 111-104 to even series

Carlos Delfino scored 22 points with six 3-pointers and the Milwaukee Bucks pulled off their second straight playoff surprise, beating the Atlanta Hawks 111-104 Monday night to draw even in the first-round series.

Brandon Jennings scored 23 points and John Salmons added 22 for the Bucks, who survived a fourth-quarter surge led by Atlanta stars Joe Johnson and Josh Smith. Now the Hawks head home for Game 5, desperately needing a win to stave off a surprising challenge by a team missing its best player, injured center Andrew Bogut.

Johnson scored 29 points, reserve Jamal Crawford had 21, and Smith had 20 points and nine rebounds.

The Bucks finally started getting to the free throw line and the made the most of it, hitting 28 of 32.

Game 4: Magic beat Bobcats 99-90 to complete sweep

The Magic were expected to send the Bobcats home in four or five games, and they did just that.

The AP reports:

Magic beat Bobcats 99-90 to complete sweep

Vince Carter scored 21 points, Jameer Nelson added 18 and the Magic showcased their depth and pressure shot-making in a 99-90 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Monday night to complete a sweep of their first-round series.

Dwight Howard was held to six points in his fourth straight game in foul trouble, but the Magic never flinched to accomplish their first four-game sweep in franchise history.

Tyrus Thomas scored a career playoff-high 21 points for the Bobcats, whose focus will now almost immediately turn to nomadic coach Larry Brown’s future with the team.

Howard did grab 13 rebounds, but was limited to 23 minutes before fouling out for the second straight game…

Rashard Lewis scored 17 points, Matt Barnes added 14 and Orlando held Stephen Jackson to 2-of-11 shooting to make sure Charlotte would be the only team not to win a first-round game.

Robin Lopez still out another week

Phoenix Suns center Robin Lopez was seen today by specialist Dr. Christopher Huston of The Orthopedic Clinic Association (TOCA) in Phoenix.

Lopez, who has not played since March 26 due to an injured back, is progressing well and will continue to have his rehabilitation workload increased based on the evaluation of the Suns’ medical staff and on the condition that no pain or any other issues develop.

Lopez will be re-evaluated in one week.

The second-year player was the Suns’ first-round pick (15th overall) of the 2008 NBA Draft.  The 7-0, 255-pound center blossomed after being inserted into the Suns’ starting lineup on Jan. 18, helping to lead the Suns to a 22-9 (.710) record in his starts.  Lopez averaged 11.3 points, 6.3 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 24.5 minutes as a starter in 2009-10.

For the season, the Stanford product posted career highs in points (8.4), rebounds (4.9), blocks (1.04) and minutes (19.3).  His 58.8-percent field-goal accuracy (171/291) would have ranked third in the NBA if he had reached the statistical minimum needed to qualify (min. 300 field goals made).

NBA fines Erick Dampier

Dallas Mavericks’ center Erick Dampier has been fined $35,000 for publicly criticizing game officials, it was announced today by Stu Jackson, NBA Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

Dampier was fined for comments made to the media following the Mavericks’ 94-90 loss to the San Antonio Spurs in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference First Round on April 23.

More details tonight.

Former Bucks player Kevin Restani dies at 58

Former Milwaukee Bucks player Kevin Restani died Sunday night in San Francisco, California after returning to his home there from Milwaukee where he had participated over the weekend in the North American Association of Club Athletic Directors basketball tournament. Restani played on the Golden Masters team representing the Olympic Club of San Francisco.  He attended the Bucks-Atlanta playoff game Saturday night at Bradley Center.

Restani played over 300 games in five seasons  (l974-79) with the Bucks including a trip to the 1976 playoffs. He played under Head Coaches Larry Costello and Don Nelson and averaged 4.6 rebounds and 6.0 points per game with the Bucks.  Nicknamed “Big Bird” by then Bucks TV and radio play-by-play man Eddie Doucette, Kevin was an eight-year NBA veteran who played with the Kansas City Kings, San Antonio Spurs and Cleveland Cavaliers for a total of 550 career NBA games with four teams.  He played several seasons in Europe after his NBA career.

Among Bucks teammates during his tenure were Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bob Dandridge, Mickey Davis, Brian Winters, Junior Bridgeman and Quinn Buckner.

Restani was a University of San Francisco graduate who helped the Dons to two West Coast Athletic Conference titles. He was a third round 1974 draft pick of the Cleveland Cavaliers whose rights were purchased by the Bucks.  Kevin was a 1970 graduate of Riordan High School in San Francisco and believed to be the only alumnus to have played for any length of time in the NBA.  From 1995-97 Kevin spent three seasons as head coach of the Riordan varsity squad. His contributions to youth programs as coach and counselor were well known. He was born December 23, 1951 in San Francisco. Kevin is survived by his wife, Roberta. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Car hits Hawks team bus

Sekou Smith of the official NBA site reports:

A car smashed into the team bus while it was stopped at a light near the Bradley Center. Hawks VP of Public Relations Arthur Triche said that no one in the team’s traveling party was hurt. But they did have to exit the bus and either walk back or cab it back to the team hotel.

“We all got a jolt this morning and we didn’t need any coffee or anything else to get it,” Triche said by phone later. “But everyone is fine and we hope that the driver and whoever else was in the car are fine as well.”

Former Warriors owner Franklin Mieuli dies

Marcus Thompson II of the Bay Area News Group reports:

Franklin Mieuli, the only owner to bring a championship to the Warriors franchise since it moved West, died Sunday of natural causes. He was 89.

Mieuli owned the Warriors for 24 years, selling the franchise in 1985. But Mieuli, with his bushy beard and plaid deerstalker cap, was a regular sight courtside at Warriors games over the years, even the early part of this past season. He had been hospitalized recently, the family told the Warriors.

“Franklin Mieuli was one of the most instrumental figures in my life,” Al Attles, who was coach of Mieuli’s 1975 championship team, said in a news release.

The AP reports:

Mieuli was the principal owner of the Warriors from the time they moved to the Bay Area in 1962 until he sold them in 1986. He won an NBA title with the team in 1975…

Mieuli also once owned a small percentage of the San Francisco Giants and still had a five per cent interest in the 49ers, which he purchased in 1954.

Mieuli, who grew up in San Jose and attended the University of Oregon, was an advertising executive for a San Francisco brewery which, at his instigation, began sponsoring 49ers radio broadcasts.

Game 4: Jazz take 3-1 lead on Nuggets with 117-106 win

The AP reports:

Jazz take 3-1 lead on Nuggets with 117-106 win

Carlos Boozer had 31 points and 13 rebounds, Deron Williams added 24 points and 13 assists, and the Utah Jazz held off a late charge to beat the Denver Nuggets 117-106 on Sunday night for a 3-1 lead in their Western Conference playoff series.

Carmelo Anthony finished with 39 points and led the Nuggets back within range late in the fourth quarter, but Denver never caught all the way up and lost for the third straight time in the series…

Denver trailed by 18 entering the final period but was able to get within 113-106 on back-to-back 3-pointers from Anthony, but that was as close as it could get.

C.J. Miles scored 21 and Wesley Matthews added 18 points for Utah. The Jazz led by as much as 20 and had the Nuggets off balance until Anthony led a surge early in the fourth.