The Milwaukee Bucks made a couple of big moves to start the offseason. They know that this will be their last chance to convince Giannis Antetokounmpo to stay with them for the long run, so they were quite aggressive in their pursuit of new talents.
And even though the Bogdan Bogdanovic fiasco kind of hurt their plans, the Bucks still managed to put together a very competitive roster that can finally get over the hump, assuming coach Mike Budenholzer actually plays their starters heavy minutes in the playoffs.
The Bucks have proven to be a dominant team in the regular season but have struggled when the court gets smaller. Hopefully, they've learned from their past mistakes and this will be the year they finally make it to the NBA Finals. For now, this is how their starting lineup will look like.
Bench: D.J. Augustin, Jaylen Adams, Bryn Forbes, Pat Connaughton, Torrey Craig, Sam Merrill, Jordan Nwora, Thanasis Antetokounmpo, Treveon Graham, Cameron Reynolds, D.J. Wilson, Mamadi Diakite, Bobby Portis, Justin Patton
Point Guard: Jrue Holiday
The Milwaukee Bucks got a massive upgrade at the point guard position with Jrue Holiday. Yes, they lost Wesley Matthews' tough defense but they added the most underrated defender in the league and one of the few guys that could actually guard one through five.
Jrue Holiday can thrive as a playmaker or play off the ball. He's a great scorer, an unselfish player, and an impactful competitor that can significantly improve their chances. This is no disrespect towards Eric Bledsoe or George Hill, but none of them can sit on Jrue's table.
Shooting Guard: Donte DiVincenzo
Ironically, the Milwaukee Bucks originally intended to trade away Donte DiVincenzo to the Sacramento Kings as a part of the Bogdan Bogdanovic deal. Now, he's slated to replace Wesley Matthews as the team's starting shooting guard instead.
DiVincenzo has been quite a solid role player for the Bucks thus far in his young career. Now, however, it's pretty clear that he must take his game up a notch if he wants to stay with the team for the long run. He's got what it takes to pull it off.
Small Forward: Khris Middleton
Even though he had some down games in the bubble, there's no denying that Khris Middleton is one of the best, most versatile, and most underrated players in the world. He's the true definition of a hard-working player that can do it all.
Middleton is a plus-defender. He can create for others, and he's the best shooter on the team and it's not even close. The Bucks need to get him more involved during close games when Giannis has most of the touches, and Jrue Holiday's presence will certainly help him get the rock when and where he needs it.
Power Forward: Giannis Antetokounmpo
Well, this guy doesn't need much of an introduction. Giannis Antetokounmpo is the reigning (back-to-back) MVP and Defensive Player of the Year, and it's pretty clear that the Milwaukee Bucks will only go as far as The Greek Freak can take them.
Giannis has posted historically great numbers in limited minutes in the regular season but is yet to make adjustments in the playoffs. That, plus his lack of a consistent jump shot are the only things holding him back from being the best player in the world.
Center: Brook Lopez
Mike Budenholzer and Brook Lopez have done an outstanding job of completely revolutionizing his game. He went from being a heavy-footed big man who made the most of his damage from within close range to one of the best shooting bigs in the league.
Somehow, someway, Brook Lopez turned into a 3-and-D specialist, which is impressive considering we're talking about a seven-footer. He kind of regressed last season in terms of efficiency, but his presence in the perimeter opens up a lot of space for Giannis' drives.