WASHINGTON -- The Milwaukee Bucks knew how painful this loss was. Staring ahead and speaking softly, they realized their playoff chances were sliding away. Entering the game against the woeful Washington Wizards, the Bucks were just 1 1/2 games behind the slumping Philadelphia 76ers for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. After a humiliating 121-112 defeat to the Wizards on Wednesday night combined with the Sixers easy win in Cleveland, Milwaukee fell 2 1/2 games behind. The Bucks have five games left -- including one with Philadelphia in a week -- and the Sixers have four to go -- all on the road. "Wrong time to have a bad game," Milwaukee coach Scott Skiles said. Jordan Crawford equaled a season-high with 32 points, and John Wall had 14 points and 10 assists for the Wizards. The Bucks had the previous three days off while the Sixers were completing their third game in three nights. On Thursday, Milwaukee plays at Indiana. The Pacers are on a six-game winning streak, and have beaten the Bucks twice. "Its an absolute must-win for us. We have to find a way to get that game," Skiles said. Monta Ellis had 31 points for Milwaukee, which has lost four of five, while Brandon Jennings had 25 points and Drew Gooden added 21 points and 12 rebounds. "Its tough, tough to be in this position," Gooden said. "Its tough to lose games against teams that are not in the fight or in the race for the playoffs. Then again, we cant say this is the most disappointing loss of the season," he said. "It shouldnt have come down to this game or the next game." Nene and Kevin Seraphin both had 14 points for Washington, which has won four of six. On Monday, the Wizards beat Eastern Conference-leading Chicago on the road. Washington, which started the season by losing 12 of its first 13, has embraced the role of spoiler. "I think they might like it -- the way theyre playing," coach Randy Wittman said. "We want to be Milwaukee. We want to be in the hunt, but if were not, lets cause some grief coming down the stretch." Nene missed the previous 10 games with a left foot injury. His return was announced by the team on Twitter 10 minutes before the game. He converted a three-point play with 7:50 to play to give Washington a 99-87 lead. The Bucks closed within 112-109 on Jennings 3-pointer with 1:14 to play, but the Wizards held on. "They just had way more energy than us on both ends," Jennings said. "I guess just going out with pride, I guess thats what theyre playing with." Before they play the Sixers, the Bucks have to play New Jersey and Toronto, and finish on April 26 at Boston. They have little time to recover before the game at Indiana. "Were going to have to come out with a lot of energy and just play that game like its our last," Jennings said. Ersan Ilyasova had 13 points and Ellis scored 10 in the first quarter to help Milwaukee take a 31-28 lead. Ilyasova was held to one free throw over the final three quarters. In the second quarter, Jennings had 12 points to help the Bucks to a 62-60 halftime lead. Gooden made a unique three-point play with 8:06 to play in the second quarter. He threw a ball against the backboard, caught his own rebound, laid the ball in, was fouled by Washingtons Cartier Martin and made the free throw. The Wizards took the lead with a 10-0 run that bridged the end of the second and beginning of the third quarters to take a 67-62 lead. They increased it to 81-72 and led 88-81 after three. Before the game, Skiles was fully aware of the implications of the game. "We have one fortunate thing going for us in that we do play Philadelphia," Skiles said. "There is a night coming up here where we have full control. We need to make sure that were in position for that night." NOTES: Wittman said chances were "probably slim" that F Andray Blatche, who hasnt played since March 18 because of "conditioning problems" would return this season. At Wednesdays shootaround, Blatche told reporters: "I cut my hair. Thats five pounds right there." ... Bucks F/C Larry Sanders didnt play because of stomach flu. ... Milwaukee had won 14 straight games over teams with records below .500. ... Crawford played despite an injury to his right ankle. Cheap Jerseys
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. Arron Afflalo was pleased that everyone did as they were told. "We got some fast-break layups and made some shots, but defence was the key," Afflalo said.NAPLES, Fla. - Larry Mize played an almost-perfect round on what he called a perfect day for golf. Mize shot a 10-under 62 in calm, sunny conditions Friday to take a two-stroke lead after the first round of the Champions Tours ACE Group Classic. Mize holed a 35-foot eagle putt on the par-5 17th and birdied No. 18. He hit 12 of 14 fairways, all 18 greens in regulation and had just 27 putts. "I just think it was an ideal day to play golf," said the 53-year-old Mize, the 2010 Montreal Championship winner for his lone title on the 50-and-over tour. Tom Lehman, the player of the year last season, was second along with Kenny Perry and 2011 Senior British Open champion Russ Cochran. Mike Goodes, who won the qualifier Tuesday, was another stroke back at 65. Victorias Jim Rutledge hit a 2-under 70 while Rod Spittle of Niagara Falls, Ont., finished the round 1-under 71. "Its amazing," Perry said. "You can shoot 64 and be two behind. Typical day on the Champions Tour." Only three of Mizes eight birdies came on putts inside 10 feet. He holed a 25-footer on No. 7 and a 45-footer on No. 11. "It doesnt surprise me when Larry Mize makes a putt," said Goodes, who played with Mize. "If you ever watch that silky stroke of his, hes got one of the prettiest strokes ever." "I could see 6, 7 under, but 10 under is pretty amazing," defending champion Bernhard Langer said. Langer, the winner last year at The Quarry, was at 66 along with Jay Haas and Michael Allen. This April will be the 25th anniversary of Mizes playoff chip-in to win the 1987 Masteers.dddddddddddd This is the 25th edition of a Champions Tour event in Naples. Mizes 62 is lowest on the tour since Nick Price shot an 11-under 60 last year in the Toshiba Classic. "Ive just got to enjoy today and come out and keep firing the next two days because everybodys going to be firing as well," Mize said. Mize matched his career low. He shot a 62 once on the PGA Tour -- in the 1985 Los Angeles Open, On that day, Mize eagled the first hole and shot a 6-under 29 on the front nine, and was 8 under after 11 holes. "Sixty-twos dont come along very often, so its a pretty special day for me," said Mize, who did not win that year at Riviera Country Club. Perry was 8 under going into the 17th, which had been playing downwind and yielded six eagles and 36 birdies. But Perry put his tee shot in a bush and had to take an unplayable lie. He was just short of the green, but put his pitch shot 20 feet past the hole and made bogey. "I may have tried to swing too hard on No. 17, may have tried to do something a little bit out of my element there that I probably shouldnt have done," Perry said. "I was feeling good. I made nine birdies, and just was rolling, just made four birdies in a row." Lehman rallied after bogeys on Nos. 11 and 12 with five straight birdies. He just missed a birdie putt on No. 18 to make it six in a row. "The round had a little bit of a hiccup there in the middle," Lehman said. Cochran, playing the back nine first, birdied Nos. 8 and 9, his final two holes, to get to 8 under. He shared the first-round lead last year, and went on to tie for third. ' ' '