Save for a now-ritual whooping courtesy of the Los Angeles Clippers, the Milwaukee Bucks have been on a roll of late. They've now won six of their last seven to move three games clear of the .500 mark and eight-and-a-half games ahead of the Raptors in the race for eighth place in the Eastern Conference.
The addition of JJ Redick and the recent uptick in point-guard-iness from Brandon Jennings have both been of great help to Milwaukee's hopes. But as Grantland's Brett Koremenos pointed out, the real surprise has been the emergence of Monta Ellis as a potentially crucial component of a competitive club. The five-man lineup of Ellis, Redick, Ersan Ilyasova, Mike Dunleavy and Larry Sandersówith its combination of perimeter shooting and defense around Ellisóhas outscored its opposition by 27 points per 100 possessions, albeit in a tiny sample (22 minutes) across six games.
But with Jennings' latest threats regarding his future in Milwaukee, it might behoove the Bucks to see just how good they can be if they decide to hang onto just one of their two ball-dominating guards.