Monday, February 23, 2009

Alexander Proves Game

Alexander provides energy boost
By Charles F. Gardner
The Journal Sentinel, Posted: Feb. 23, 2009

Rookie forward Joe Alexander has experienced a bumpy ride in his rookie season with the Milwaukee Bucks.

He has watched from the bench while second-round pick Luc Richard Mbah a Moute has played extensively and at times in a starting role.

But the 6-foot-8 Alexander took advantage of a chance for some additional playing time Sunday, and he helped the Bucks grab a 120-117 victory over the Denver Nuggets at the Bradley Center.

Alexander played 10 consecutive minutes in the second quarter and brought some needed energy to the Bucks' equation.

He finished with eight points on 3-of-8 shooting, two rebounds and one blocked shot in 15 minutes.

"I thought he did a nice job," coach Scott Skiles said. "I thought he changed the energy a little bit when he came in the game in the first half. Unfortunately, he's in a position where he doesn't have a vault of minutes he can rely on.

"He plays, and then he doesn't play for a while, and so it's hard for him to build on anything. I understand that. He's in a tough spot."

Alexander had played just 15 minutes in the first three games since the National Basketball Association all-star break. He did not play in the Bucks' victory over Detroit on Tuesday, and had four points in 6 minutes against Chicago the next night.

He played 9 minutes but failed to score in the Bucks' loss to Cleveland on Friday.

Against Denver, Alexander could match up against the lanky Chris Andersen and forward Linas Kleiza in a high-powered offensive game.

"After he (Skiles) took me out the first time, he put me back in," Alexander said. "That means he liked what I did initially. That's all I'm concerned about, really, that I'm doing what they want me to do."

Alexander was the eighth overall pick in the 2008 draft but he missed much of training camp with an injury and didn't find a spot in the regular rotation.
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