An anonymous NBA scout has shared his thoughts on the Milwaukee Bucks’ upcoming season with Sports Illustrated’s The Crossover, and they include some bold predictions for Giannis Antetokounmpo.
With the return of regular season NBA basketball almost upon us, the time for predictions and projections is almost finally over for the Milwaukee Bucks.
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After an eventful summer which included the organization shocking many experts with the draft selection of Thon Maker, Khris Middleton‘s potentially season-ending injury and the decision to trade Michael Carter-Williams, what does the wider NBA really think of the Bucks at present?
As could be expected, Khris Middleton’s injury provided one of the primary topics of conversation:
“It is very unfortunate for them that Middleton got hurt. I don’t know if he’s as good as some of the advance metrics rate him, but he’s very good and was trending toward being a borderline All-Star. And what is clear from all the advance metrics, is that the Bucks play terrible when he’s not on the floor. Like they are nowhere near a competent NBA team when Khris Middleton is on the bench.”
With those remarks in mind, there’s little doubt that Middleton’s absence played a big role in shaping the scout’s overall impression of what the Bucks will look like in the 2016-17 season. The Bucks have made two trades since Middleton fell to injury in order to ensure the team is fully equipped for the new season, but will that be enough to see Milwaukee return to the post-season?
Unfortunately, the answer on that prospect was short and not so sweet.
“No, no playoffs. Hard no.”
Mandatory Credit: James Brosher-USA TODAY Sports
On a much more positive note, as was indicated by his status as the league’s best international player in NBA.com’s GM Survey earlier in the week, Giannis Antetokounmpo’s emergence certainly hasn’t passed those around the NBA by.
Not only is this particular scout impressed by the Greek Freak’s skill and development, but they see a big season lying ahead:
“Giannis is a monster. Giannis Anetokuonmpo makes the All-Star game this year. He’s going to average like 19 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists. He’ll make the All-Star game, and their team’s gonna stink.”
Although that last part doesn’t sound so good, maybe Giannis is going to be good enough to lead the Bucks in defying the expectations of many.