With Bucks sharp shooter Khris Middleton’s return to the starting lineup on the horizon (pre all-star break), Bucks fans should not be worried about the team’s current slump.
Khris Middleton, the 5th year wing out of Texas A&M has missed all of this season after tearing his hamstring in September. Middleton, an intricate part of the Milwaukee Bucks offensively, and defensively has been deeply missed this season. Last season, he made huge strides towards being Bucks most reliable player on both ends. With the addition of Middleton to the starting lineup, it adds a lethal jump shooter, lockdown defender, and a vocal leader. He would most likely fill in for Tony Snell, which needless to say, is a huge boost. Don’t get me wrong, Snell has improved this year, but he would fit best with the bench unit.
Defensively, Middleton usually takes the task of guarding the opposing teams best player. He holds his own on a consistent basis on both ends of the floor. The Milwaukee Bucks are struggling to get consistent play from anyone not named Giannis Antetokounmpo, and the pending return of Khris Middleton will add consistency and cohesion to the team.
Khris Middleton, offensively, demands the attention of opposing defenses for his ability to knock down jump shots and drive to the basket for a sweet floater. This gives more room for Jabari Parker and Giannis Antetokounmpo to operate on offense. Middleton is a career 44% shooter from the field, and a very solid 40% from deep. It is clear why the Milwaukee Bucks are “struggling,” but Bucks fans should not worry. With the Bucks treading .500 at 20-21, they have surpassed expectations, especially playing this whole season without their underrated, star wing. In 2852 minutes played last season, Khris Middleton lead the Bucks in Real Plus Minus (3.71), Offensive Rating (104.6), and in Defensive Rating (104.7). Those aren’t eye popping numbers, but that should be contributed to the Milwaukee Bucks struggles last season. When he is off the court the Bucks scored 95.8 points per 100 possessions.
Khris Middleton won’t solve all of the Milwaukee Bucks problems, but he will certainly be a huge boost for the Milwaukee Bucks team.