The Bucks hold the best record in the league once again, at 53-12, and are playing the most consistent ball in the NBA. They have a system that revolves around young superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo, and a host of role players who do exactly what they are paid to do including play defense and hit threes.
Their head coach, Mike Budenholzer, is a defensive mastermind and will hold his players accountable for their performances every night. Up to this point, the Bucks ranks 1st in PPG, 1st in RPG, and 7th in APG. Putting up a whopping .815 winning percentage, they have clearly been the best overall team in the league this season.
Despite all of this, the Bucks will not win the NBA title this year. Unfortunately for them, the Finals are played in the post-season where big players perform in big moments and limitations are exploited. The Bucks, as great of a team as they are, have too many limitations and not enough big-game players. Here is why the Milwaukee Bucks will not win the NBA title in 2020.
Of course, this is all pending the current suspension of the league due to Covid-19. Until now, it seems the season will be on hold for the foreseeable future, with league representatives discussing potential solutions or continuing the 2019-2020 season. While all NBA fans and media members await an update, this is the reality of the situation and we all hope it blows over in a hurry.
1. Los Angeles Giants
Perhaps the biggest reason the Bucks won’t win the title is because of the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers. That’s right, these two teams have greater potential to perform better in the postseason and are simply more equipped to come out with a victory over the Bucks.
The Lakers are scary good since they have no real weakness aside from the occasional inconsistent outside shooting. LeBron James and Anthony Davis are two of the top five players in the world, and they are backed by active big men in Dwight Howard and Javale McGee who feast inside the paint. They also have a host of 3-and-D guys who will play great next to James and Davis.
The Clippers are also extremely deep and have more star power than any team in the league in terms of depth quality. Kawhi Leonard is the reigning Finals MVP and one of the best two-way players in the modern era. Paul George is also a superstar-level two-way player who enjoys the big moments in the postseason. Backed by Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell, the Clippers are simply better equipped to win a title than the Bucks who lack any real star power outside of Giannis.
2. Lack of Star Power
The Bucks do not have enough star power outside of Giannis Antetokounmpo. No disrespect to Khris Middleton, who is a fantastic shooter and defender, but he would not be an All-Star if it wasn’t for Giannis playing alongside him. Not to mention, the Bucks are a team full of role players who do their job without adding anything more.
Eric Bledsoe is an excellent defensive point guard, but his struggles from the perimeter in the postseason are well-documented. He is a career 33.7% shooter from the three, and that number falls to 25.5% in the playoffs. His inability to find the range at times can even make him a liability on the floor, something that the Bucks don’t need when they have Giannis. Brook Lopez is a very nice big man but doesn’t offer much resistance inside nor on the boards. Wes Matthews is also a nice role player but also seems to always find a cold streak.
The best teams in the league will be able to focus on Giannis and force other players to beat them. The Bucks have a nice supporting cast that feeds off of Giannis, but they simply will not be able to perform to the level it takes to win the NBA title.
3. Giannis Antetokounmpo Limitations
Giannis Antetokounmpo will be a two-time reigning MVP, and hardly anyone will dispute his absolute dominance on both ends of the court the past two years. He is one of the most freakish athletes of all time and simply is too much to handle down low. The Bucks have had the best record in the league for two seasons now, and Giannis is the undisputed major reason why.
But, he has his limitations that will hurt the Bucks in the playoffs. Giannis has improved his shooting, but still cannot be a consistent threat from the outside. Giannis is only shooting 30.6% from deep and 63.3% from the free-throw line. That will not cut it when the game is on the line and he is forced to make one or both free throws to give his team a chance to win. He is constantly left open to shoot, and even if he makes a few, he will brick a few more. Today’s superstars need to be able to stretch the floor, or else they risk not being able to be the man on a championship team.
Even a player like Russell Westbrook was unable to lead his team to the Finals because he is not, and never will be, a consistent perimeter shooter. The better teams in the league including the Lakers and Clippers will be able to clog the lane and force Giannis and others to take perimeter shots. If Giannis can’t do it then it is likely that his supporting cast won’t be able to do it either.