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Biggest Needs for the Milwaukee Bucks to Address for the 2021 NBA Season

| October 27, 2020 2:32 am PDT
Milwaukee Bucks' Biggest Needs 2021 NBA Season

The Milwaukee Bucks did not end the 2019-20 NBA season like they thought they would. Nobody did, to be clear, seeing as a global pandemic interrupted the regular season and moved most of the league to a bubble in Orlando.

But the Bucks still finished the season with the best record for the second year in a row. They had the top seed and the reigning NBA MVP (who would win again). They were supposed to get further than the second round.

Sadly, they did not. 

Now it’s about pressing on and trying to win a title despite the step back, and doing all they can to keep Giannis Antetokounmpo from leaving. When you look at the early 2021 NBA Finals odds, the Bucks are still very much a team to fear.

For as dominant as they’ve been, however, Milwaukee has some holes to fill.

With that in mind, join me as I break down the Milwaukee Bucks’ biggest needs for the 2021 NBA season.

Another Superstar

The elephant in the room is that Giannis is arguably overworked. Or that there is too much pressure on him to dominate every single game.

He wouldn’t be wrong, as a lack of star power is easily one of the Milwaukee Bucks’ biggest needs going into 2021. 

The Greek Freak had the second-highest usage rate of anyone last season. Even so, he was the league MVP, was a stud on defense, and had the best Player Efficiency Rating in the NBA.

The guy just needs some help. Some actual help.

Khris Middleton is a rock-solid starter. Eric Bledsoe can rise up in spurts. Brook Lopez can drop an explosive shooting game and rack up some blocks.

None of these guys are superstars.

When the going got tough last year, Bledsoe faded, Middleton was hit or miss, and whatever Lopez brought to the table simply wasn’t enough.

Whether to simply appease Giannis to convince him to stay, or to just get better in an effort to take that next step, the Bucks need to consider going all out to land a second superstar.

Of course, it’s anyone’s guess who that is, or how they go about doing it. The Chris Paul rumors have run wild for the past year or so, and at one time, CP3 wanted to be traded to the Bucks.

There’s also big names like Bradley Beal and C.J. McCollum that have at least been sprinkled into trade rumors before.

If Milwaukee gets one of those guys (or someone else with similar star power), it’d take pressure off of Antetokounmpo and provide a big boost to a team that’s already the best in their conference.

Playmaking

Whether it comes in the form of a second superstar or not, another one of the Milwaukee Bucks’ biggest needs is playmaking.

Giannis owning the top usage rate in basketball is a pretty good indicator that he needs the ball out of his hands a bit more.

That’s subjective, of course, since he is a two-time MVP and can be incredibly dominant. But we saw in that playoff series against Miami that he can’t do it all on his own.

The Heat built a dang wall, for goodness sake.

A great way to beat that is to not have Giannis try to break it down every time. The Greek Freak should also keep working on his shooting so defenses that try that will have to pay, but getting other guys to create offense will render this a non-issue for the most part, too.

Milwaukee does have some guys who can create offense, but nobody that does so consistently. Malcolm Brogdon was their other guy who created on a regular basis, and they let the Pacers sign him last offseason.

There is word that the Bucks are interested in Bogdan Bogdanovic.

I love the idea of this, as it checks a lot of boxes. He’s not a superstar, but he’s an underrated talent that can create offense (15.1 points and 3.4 assists per game last year), score at will, and also space the floor. 

Whether he’d be handed a starting gig or come off the bench, he’d provide a sizable boost and fill one of the Milwaukee Bucks’ biggest needs.

Bench Offense

Normally, I wouldn’t have much to say about Milwaukee’s bench that’s bad. They actually ranked 8th in scoring among NBA benches last season, and they have a plethora of useful bodies.

Donte DiVincenzo was a key piece for them off the bench for much of the year, and he even ended up starting for a while. Pat Cannaughton, Kyle Korver, Ersan Ilyasova, Marvin Williams, Robin Lopez, and George Hill round out a pretty strong supporting cast that comes off the bench.

That unit ranked second in three-point makes last year, and was top-10 in three-point shooting percentage. They even were first in rebounding and 13th in blocked shots.

Overall, this was a strength for the Bucks.

Unfortunately, Donte DiVincenzo was quite erratic inside the bubble, and the Bucks could end up losing some of these guys in free agency.

Robin Lopez could opt out, while Korver, Connaughton, Williams, and even Sterling Brown could all exit this offseason.

Depending on which guys don’t come back, the Bucks will need to consider making moves to add some nice depth pieces. We always see the top title threats add useful bodies to fuel a championship run, and Milwaukee may need to do the same.

Outside of looking at some cheap free agents, the Bucks do have a first-round pick in the 2020 NBA Draft that they could use. Interesting offensive players that could still be available at the 24th spot include 2020 NBA Draft sleepers like Jordan Nwora and Josh Green.

Summary

The Bucks still have one of the best players in the NBA, and a solid supporting cast around him. Of course, this hasn’t quelled trade rumors involving The Greek Freak.

They’ve honestly only grown louder, with news breaking that the Miami Heat could be “all in” on landing the superstar.

Our own Michael Wynn did highlight the team from South Beach when he took a look at predicting Giannis Antetokounmpo’s next team, after all.

However, the Bucks are still built to contend. Ownership has been vocal about trying to win with Giannis, and recently confirmed they have zero intention of trading him even if he doesn’t sign an extension.

If that’s the case, the Bucks could be 1-2 moves from keeping their superstar. The Milwaukee Bucks team needs above are a pretty good place to start.

Ready to bet on the Bucks going into 2020, regardless of how they operate during the offseason? Hit up the best online betting sites to place your bets.

Noah Davis
Noah Davis

Noah Davis is one of the more diverse writers at GamblingSites.com. Like many of his colleagues, he's a huge fan of both football and basketball. But he also writes about box office records, TV show prop bets, DFS, and all kinds of other subjects.

When it comes to the NFL, Noah's favorite team is the Cleveland Browns. He enjoys cheering them on with his wife and daughter.

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