It's not like they had their bus parked directly by their locker room door or backed up so close to their bench that they easily could have boarded in a moment's notice.
But the Nets could've been in that summer school mode, so road weary after spending the last 12 days away from home and zipping across the country that they might've looked past the lowly Bucks as they anticipated sleeping in their own beds soon.
But for once, the Nets didn't get stuck in that bear trap.
Behind a strong offensive 23-point outburst from Marcus Thornton off the bench, the Nets closed their six-game road trip by upending Milwaukee, 107-98, at the BMO Harris Bradley Center Saturday night to finish with a 4-2 mark on their extended excursion.
Thornton finally seems to be over the bad batch of lobster mac and cheese that gave him food poisoning, easily turning in his best game since the Nets (28-29) traded Reggie Evans and Jason Terry for him the day before the Feb. 20 deadline. He swished his first four shots of the night and canned 8 of 13 attempts overall, including a 3 of 4 mark from downtown.
With Kevin Garnett sitting this one out with back spasms and rookie Mason Plumlee getting the start, Andray Blatche took advantage of his extended minutes, scoring 19 points and getting 12 rebounds off the bench.
Deron Williams had 15 points, but cooled off in the second half after appearing to bang his right wrist in the first half, netting just two points after halftime.
Ramon Sessions and Khris Middleton had 16 points apiece for Milwaukee (11-47).
Leading by as many as 11 points on the third, the Nets allowed the Bucks to get back in it at the tail end of the quarter, watching them draw to within 77-72 heading into the fourth quarter. But the Nets used an 8-2 spurt capped by Mirza Teletovic's long three-pointer for an 85-74 edge with 10:05 remaining.
Milwaukee cut it to six, but the Nets held serve, never really wavering and grabbed a 100-91 advantage on Thornton's straightaway three-pointer with 2:45 to play, essentially putting this one out of reach and ensuring the Nets didn't suffer an embarrassing end to their trip.
Defense was optional in the first half, but at least the Nets held a 55-53 lead at the break. Both teams took 41 shots during the game's initial 24 minutes, and the Nets made one more bucket than Milwaukee, nailing 20 attempts.
The Nets also ate Milwaukee alive on the interior in the first half, pounding them in the paint for 24 points, converting 12 of 20 shots inside the key to help negate the Bucks 23-18 edge on the glass.
Notes & quotes: Jason Kidd didn't seem overly concerned with the status of the 37-year-old Garnett, suggesting the back spasms won't shelve him for an extended period. "I don't think it's long-term. This is his rest day, so we'll get him some proper rest and see how he feels tomorrow." It was the second time Garnett had been held out since the All-Star Game. He also took a seat in the Nets' win over the Lakers a week ago and has missed a total of eight games this season to rest up.