The Orlando Magic are looking to break a single-season franchise record for road wins that dates back 12 years. It's been just about that long since they've had any consistent success in Milwaukee.
The Magic will try to win their 24th road game of the season on Friday night in a venue that's been a nightmare for them for more than a decade when they face the Bucks at the Bradley Center.
Orlando (46-27) has dropped 18 of 21 games in Milwaukee since April 14, 1996, with 13 of those losses coming by double digits. The Magic have won only once in their last nine games at the Bradley Center.
The Magic are a combination of three wins or Washington losses away from clinching their first division title since 1995-96, the last season Shaquille O'Neal played for them. That was also the year Orlando won a franchise-record 23 road games.
Dwight Howard has replaced O'Neal as the team's presence in the paint, and the Magic have gone 23-13 this season away from home. Only Boston and the Los Angeles Lakers have more road wins.
Though the Bucks (24-46) are basically out of playoff contention, they're 18-17 at home. They beat the Magic 100-86 in Milwaukee on Dec. 12, holding them to 33.8 percent shooting while the Bucks hit 50.0 percent in what Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy called a "nonexistent" defensive effort from his team.
Lately, the defense has been solid but Orlando's offense, which turns out an Eastern Conference-best 104.6 points per game, has been lacking. The Magic have averaged just 96.5 points in losing three of four, including a 107-97 defeat to San Antonio on Tuesday.
"We missed some opportunities, missed some layups, turned the ball over on fast breaks," Orlando's Rashard Lewis said. "We played good defense, but we couldn't convert running out."
Fellow starting forward Hedo Turkoglu left in the second quarter with a sprained wrist, and is expected to be a game-time decision against Milwaukee. Turkoglu has averaged 23.0 points in his last four games against Milwaukee.
Howard, who recorded his NBA-best eighth 20-point, 20-rebound effort on Tuesday, is averaging 18.0 points and 12.5 rebounds in two games against the Bucks this season.
Milwaukee has dropped eight of nine, including five of six at home.
The Bucks are the second-worst defensive team in the East, yielding 102.5 points per game. They're allowing 108.2 per game over their last 16.
They gave up 94 points through three quarters on Wednesday in a 115-96 loss in Atlanta. Michael Redd, who leads Milwaukee with 23.3 points per game, had only one point after scoring 19 in the first quarter.
"It's really kind of hard to explain," said Redd, who's averaging 26.0 points this season against Orlando. "I wasn't any less aggressive. It just didn't work out after the first quarter."
The Bucks have been getting some excellent interior play from center Andrew Bogut, who has averaged 18.6 points and 13.6 rebounds in his last five games. Bogut had 27 points against the Hawks on Wednesday before leaving the game after Atlanta's Marvin Williams apparently hit Bogut's nose with his arm, bloodying his nose.
He's expected to be available to play against the Magic.