Jerry Zgoda missed the entire Kevin Garnett era, but he's back covering the Timberwolves after working the beat for their first four seasons two decades ago. In between, he covered a bit of everything: Gopher men's and women's basketball and NCAA athletics, golf, outdoor recreation, sports media and a little Vikings and Twins.

Barea hurt, Wolves lose to Bucks 98-95

Posted by: Jerry Zgoda under Wolves guards, Wolves injury report, Wolves postgame, Wolves news Updated: December 28, 2011 - 7:43 AM

The bad news from Tuesday's 98-95 loss just might have gotten worse late in the game when J.J. Barea left midway through the fourth quarter with a hamstring injury that clearly left him in pain afterward.

He dressed very carefully and left the locker room limping noticeably.

He said, "I hope it's not that bad" before he headed to the bus bound for the airport, but judging from the look on his face and the way he walked, it wouldn't surprise me if this is more than just a day-to-day thing.

Rick Adelman -- who, of course, was gone tonight while he attended a family funeral -- doesn't have his teams practice on the day after back-to-back games, so with the day off on Wednesday there might not be word on that hamstring until Thursday.

Barea injured the leg -- the same one on which he had that quad contusion that kept him out of last week's preseason finale -- while going up for a layup just before the Wolves began to fight themselves back an 11-point deficit to get within a bucket but no further late in the game.

David Kahn just might have been right signing a third point guard as insurance just in case injuries hit hard in this lockout-shortened season.

Here's the game story from Tuesday's game detailing the hideous details -- that 60-point first half the Wolves surrendered, their 25 turnovers, that 20 point third-quarter deficit -- before they fought themselves back into the game only to have Kevin Love's 3 pointer that would have tied the game just before the final buzzer miss..

And the notebook that goes with it.

A couple quick items before I head to bed and get up early for a flight back home to Minnesota.

* His teammates didn't come ready to protect the ball and ready to play, but Love did once again. He set club records for free throws attempted and made in a quarter when he went 13-for-15 from the foul line in the first quarter alone and by night's end, he surpassed his own franchise records for free throws he shared with Tony Campbell for free throws attempted in a game and with Christian Laettner for free throws made in a game.

He finished 19 for 24 from the line and had 31 points and 20 rebounds, and it still wasn't quite enough.

* Bucks guard Brandon Jennings backtracked a couple weeks ago from the "all hype" comments he made about Ricky Rubio before the 2009 draft, attributing them to youthfulness.

But he sure played like he wanted to prove something after the Wolves took Rubio fifth that year and the Bucks took him 10th.

Jennings went for 24 points and 7 rebounds and seemed energized, even if he wasn't matched head-to-head with Rubio much until later in the game.

* Should Wolves fans be alarmed that Bucks rookie Jon Leuer -- a second-round pick from Orono by way of the University of Wisconsin -- outplayed No. 2 overall pick Derrick Williams?

Leuer got his chance to play when Drew Gooden was suspended by the NBA for the night and after playing little more than a minute on Monday in Charlotte and he delivered one of the night's most important performance with a 14-point, 8-rebound game in 20 minutes that included a huge three-point play with 1:17 left.

* How concerned are you about Wes Johnson, who played nearly 31 minutes without having any real seeming impact on the game once again?

* Michael Beasley took more 14 fewer shots Tuesday than he did against Oklahoma City on Monday, in good part because he was in foul trouble much of the game and played fewer than 26 minutes.

After hoisting 27 shots on Monday, Beasley went 6 for 13 and was back in the game to help the Wolves wipe away all but two points of an 11-point deficit in the game's last seven minutes.

* Darko Milicic also found foul trouble much of the night trying to battle Bucks center Andrew Bogut, and he fouled out with nearly nine minutes left.

That's all for tonight.

Like I said, Wolves are off on Wednesday and will return to practice Thursday to prepare for Friday's home game against Miami.

It doesn't get any easier, does it?

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