Preview: Philadelphia 76ers (0-3) at Milwaukee Bucks (1-3)
Time: Wednesday 7:00 P.M. CST
Venue: BMO Harris Bradley Center
Where To Watch: TV – FS Wisconsin, Radio – AM-620
Jabari Parker returns from injury after tearing his ACL last season, in limited action as the Bucks take on rookie center Jahlil Okafor and the Philadelphia 76ers. Milwaukee fans are hoping to witness the Bucks first victory of the season at home in the Bradley Center.
Probable 76ers Starters
G Isaiah Canaan, 6-0, Murray State
G Nik Stauskas, 6-6, Michigan
F Hollis Thompson, 6-8, Georgetown
F Nerlens Noel, 6-11, Kentucky
C Jahlil Okafor, 6-11, Duke
What We Need To Know About The 76ers
Rebuild, rebuild, rebuild has been the motto for the Philadelphia 76ers for the last couple of years and slowly and surely they are getting there, even though it’s not apparent to many basketball fans. They already have two young cornerstone big men in Jahlil Okafor and Nerlens Noel which many NBA teams find it hard to come by in establishing. They have a young hardworking point guard who scratches and claws every game to prove himself as an NBA player in Isaiah Canaan. Guard T.J. McConnell who was undrafted has also had a solid start of the season coming off the bench. After that there isn’t much as there is a lot of no name players which makes the 76ers one of the youngest, lowest payroll teams in the NBA. No one including the team itself is expecting much this season as they look to continue to rebuild for the future with another high draft pick.
Probable Bucks Starters
G Jerryd Bayless, 6-3, Arizona
G Khris Middleton, 6-8, Texas A&M
F Giannis Antetokounmpo, 6-11, Greece
F Johnny O’ Bryant III, 6-9, LSU
C Greg Monroe, 6-11, Georgetown
What We Need To Know About the Bucks
It’s the game we all have been waiting for as Jabari Parker returns to action after suffering an ACL tear early last season. Coach Kidd stated Parker will be limited to only around 15 minutes to begin his comeback but everyone is fine with that as handling a return from an injury like that, a conservative approach is the most vindicated. The return is also at a very right time as the Bucks notched their first win of the season against the Brooklyn Nets Monday and look to continue their new-found taste of victory Wednesday. Even with Parker and Tyler Ennis returning to offer support off the bench the Bucks are still plagued with injuries with OJ Mayo and John Henson still hurt; also Michael Carter-Williams will also sit out with an ankle injury.
The biggest one literally will be the unstoppable force vs. the immovable object at the center position with Monroe vs. Okafor. Offense and defense so far this season has revolved around these two big men’s respected teams and they will collide Wednesday. Will the veteran Monroe take the young rookie Okafor to school on both sides of the court, or will the young lion make an early impression to NBA fans? The other key matchup is at the power forward position with probably Johnny O ’Bryant facing second year standout Nerlens Noel. It’s all likely that Noel will score more points than O ‘Bryant but how many points can JOB hold him to and more importantly who will win the rebound game? It’s going to be a game of big men so buckle your seatbelts and hop into your time machine as you prepare to watch some old-school basketball.
Bucks’ Keys To Victory
It’s mental, the Bucks cannot underestimate the 76ers. Yes, this team doesn’t look equipped to win games but anything can happen in the NBA, especially with their young-talented big men. If Monroe can neutralize Okafor, then the floor can open up to Giannis and Middleton as 76ers will have to look for other options offensively and that will affect them defensively. Besides Monday, Bayless hasn’t had a good game and the Bucks will need that from him at point along with Greivis Vasquez giving solid minutes off the bench, in which he hasn’t at all to begin the season. Parker and Ennis are not expected to fully be back in prime shape coming back from injuries but solid minutes off the bench for them are also key since the bench is already thin from injuries.
Obviously the biggest story is Parker returning from a gruesome injury but that cannot distract the team as the 76ers are hungry to get their first win. The Bucks must take advantage of the talent they have playing and simply get the job done, in winning against an easily beatable team.