2014-15 NBA preview: Milwaukee Bucks


The Bucks were about as dreadful as possible last season, especially when considering that they weren’t trying to be bad. The playoffs were in their sights as they entered into the year. This season should be better, but, much like the Pacers, the Bucks also have some big question marks.

This is an incredibly young team. Their oldest starter will probably be Ersan Ilyasova at 27. Should they put Jabari Parker or Khris Middleton at the starting PF position, that age gets even younger. That is why this team has a wide range of possible season outcomes: young players are unknown quantities.

Milwaukee fans sadly watched as last year’s Bucks underperformed. None of the players they were counting on came through how they thought they would. Bucks fans questioned just how naughty they had been to have Santa send them O.J. Mayo, Ilysova and Larry Sanders – three lumps of coal.

The Bucks did have a couple bright spots last season and maybe even a third, when considering the mountain of losses that landed them Jabari Parker. John Henson played very well. He looked like the great defender that everybody saw at North Carolina, and The Greek Freak, Giannis Antetokounmpo (spelled that without looking) seemed to hit a wall late in the season, but early in the year, he showed some major flashes of brilliance. The Bucks recently announced that he would be playing some point guard this season. Yeah, that’s a 6’9 point guard. With the additions of Jason Kidd and Gary Payton, The Greek Freak will have a couple legends shaping his game.

Even though there are a lot of question marks, the Bucks should be in playoff contention for most of the season. The point guard position is still up in the air, and that could be a big part of what makes or breaks their playoff hopes, but it’s unlikely that Mayo, Ilyasova and Sanders all have career-bad years again.

Best case: 44-38

This team is still super young, but they turn into Phoenix East. They get up and down the court and thrash teams with their plethora of three point shooters. They also use all of their orangutan-armed men to bother massive amounts shots, which allows them to be a decently good defensive squad. They’re still a year or two away, but winning and a playoff appearance push is a push in the right direction for this young team.

Worst case: 30-52

Ilysova and Sanders never look like the players they once looked like. A big part of Ilysova’s game is being able to step behind the arc and opponents having to respect him. Ilyasova struggled last season, and he struggles again this season. Sanders continues to have issues off of the court, and those troubles translate to on the court issues. Jason Kidd is a good coach, but this causes them to win a few too many games to get a top 3 pick.

Prediction: 38-44