It was hard not to be impressed by Kenneth Faried after the Manimal was fully unleashed for the first time this season.
Faried had logged just 50 minutes in nine games before Saturday and he maximized his opportunity with Ed Davis resting.
Faried’s double-double was his first since Dec. 8, 2017, when he was with the Denver Nuggets and his 21 points were the most he had scored in almost two years, since a 21-point game against the Phoenix Suns on Jan. 28, 2017.
He was tough on the glass and scored effectively in the paint. Faried even knocked down a mid-range jumper, although he misfired on his first 3-point attempt in more than a year (Dec. 4, 2017, had been his last, also a miss).
Saturday may have been an opportunity for Faried to audition for other clubs, but if nothing else, the 29-year-old showed he still has life in his legs and his game — however limited it might be in the pace-and-space era — is still as effective as ever.
It was a road trip to forget for Rodions Kurucs.
After struggling Friday night at Charlotte, Kurucs never looked comfortable offensively against the Bucks. He missed every shot he took and committed three turnovers, two on traveling calls while rushing to try and make a play.
Kurucs on Saturday looked just like a rookie coming off a bad game trying to make up for it on one possession.
The three days off may provide the 20-year-old with a good opportunity to relax, get his mind right and start letting the game come to him the way he did when he was playing so effectively just a few games ago.