By Jay Spanbauer
In a wild weekend, the Wisconsin Herd lost back-to-back games to the Grand Rapids Drive and the Windy City Bulls. The weekend also saw guard Xavier Munford being awarded a two-way contract with the Milwaukee Bucks.
Additionally, forward Joel Bolomboy received an NBA contract from Milwaukee, only to be waived immediately after signing. The goal of these transactions by the Bucks is to increase the chance Bolomboy will be able to return to the Herd. Bolomboy will need to clear waivers before he can be resigned by a G-League team.
This string of moves also led to the converting of guard Sean Kilpatrick’s two-way contract to a guaranteed contract, meaning Milwaukee currently had one two-way contract remaining, which was quickly filled through signing of former Michigan State player Eron Harris. Harris suffered a season-ending knee injury this past February, with the Herd contract his first in the G League.
Munford was not with the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday night as they traveled to Indiana to take on the Pacers.
On the court this weekend, new Herd addition Chris McCullough – fresh from his tenure with the Brooklyn Nets – led the Herd on Friday night in Grand Rapids with 20 points and eight boards. The nice game from McCullough wasn’t enough to stop a lethal three-point shooting attack from the Drive, who easily won the contest 142-100. Grand Rapids hit an impressive 21 three-pointers on 44 percent shooting.
Cameron Oliver and D.J. Wilson added 17 and 15 points respectively.
On Saturday night, the Herd were unable to capitalize on JeQuan Lewis’ 25-point on 10 of 17 shooting, losing 122-104 to the Windy City Bulls. For the Bulls, guard Antonio Blakeney scored 41 points and grabbed 11 boards, while power forward Cristiano Felicio added 20 points.
The Herd return to action Wednesday, January 10 on the road against the Texas Legends.
For those looking to keep up with the Herd while they are out of town, the team has partnered with a number of bars across town to form the Herd Bar Network.
Mallory Steinberg, director of PR for the Wisconsin Herd, says the program is set up to give local Herd fans a place they know they can watch the team.
A featured bar is selected and promoted for every Herd away game. Fans can keep an eye on Twitter or check the Herd’s website for each game’s Bar of the Game.
There are over 30 participating bars from Oshkosh to Green Bay listed on the Herd’s website.
One of those bars is Ruby Owl Tavern, located at 421 N. Main St.
Will Amacher is the manager of Ruby Owl, and has been happy to be a member of the Herd Bar Network.
“Being in the Herd Bar Network has been a great asset in that we support the Herd and they support us,” Amacher says. “Anytime you can get your name out to two or three thousand people a night – it’s a good thing.”
Amacher says he has noticed an increase in Wisconsin Herd and Milwaukee Bucks gear and conversation at the Ruby Owl, especially on game nights. He says the Herd has been a welcome addition to the city, as far as Ruby Owl is concerned.
“The Herd and Menominee Nation Arena offer Oshkosh a fantastic sports and great entertainment venue in a town that was already known as the Event City,” Amacher says. “We’re very happy to be mere blocks away from all of the above.”
Wednesday night’s Bar of the Game for the contest between the Herd and the Texas Legends is the Green Bay Distillery in Ashwaubenon. The game features an early start time of 5 p.m.
On Friday at noon, Herd fans can watch the team take on the Austin Spurs at South of the Border, located at 800 Oregon St. in Oshkosh, and check out $3 “Flavor the Day” margaritas, $2 imported pints and $5 appetizers.
(banner image by Adam Jungwirth for the Oshkosh Independent)