Milwaukee Bucks: Breaking Down Dream & Nightmare Draft Scenarios
Is it too much to ask, "Please don't mess it up?"
Milwaukee has had some solid picks in recent years. It's where they picked up star point guard Brandon Jennings, and athletic forwards Luc Richard Mbah a Moute and Tobias Harris.
The draft has also produced recent headaches. I refer you to Yi Jianlian and Joe Alexander.
Getting the right guy is not always the easiest thing, especially picking in the middle of the pack. Busts are part of the business, and understandably so.
However, with Milwaukee being very close to relevance again in the NBA, they can ill afford a David Noel.
Start your snoozes everyone, let's break down the dream and nightmare scenarios.
Dream: Find an NBA-Ready Big Man
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Those of you who have been reading mock drafts know that Milwaukee's aspirations are big.
But the line between a big impact and a big project is uber-thin.
Slotted at No. 12, the Bucks don't have the luxury of taking a guaranteed franchise player as the New Orleans Hornets do in Anthony Davis. The recent mediocrity has left the Bucks in the middle of most drafts, leaving them to take some risky choices.
Moving forward, the Bucks are ready to win and win now. For that to happen, the Bucks need to fill the void left by the departure of Andrew Bogut.
Milwaukee needs a complement to their backcourt firepower in Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis. For that they need to draft an athletic big man that can run, rebound, be effective without the ball and, most importantly, play now.
Nightmare: Getting Cute with the First-Round Pick
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When you miss the playoffs, you have a lot of time to think about what you want to do in the draft.
Enough time to over think it.
Milwaukee needs to stay focused on what they need to do at the end of June, and not lose sight of it. The Bucks' most pressing need is in the frontcourt, and that's what they should fix.
The case has been made (even by myself) that the Bucks could use a sizable perimeter player to back up the undersized backcourt.
I'm all for fixing that problem—in the second round.
What this draft offers is an upper echelon of the power forward/center spot in the top 20 picks. With that in mind, the Bucks' most immediate chance of being successful is grabbing one those players while they are available.
There is a good chance that the likes of Austin Rivers or Jeremy Lamb will still be on the board at No. 12, and the Bucks could get tempted.
But it's not worth the risk.
The backcourt needs a sizable backup that can give some productive minutes off the bench. Those players will still be around in the second round.
No need to get cute.
Unless you're a girl, and you want to look cute.
I'm cool with that.
Dream: Get Good Value for No. 12
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There hasn't been any talks of Milwaukee shopping the No. 12 pick—and I'm not saying there should be.
But given the right scenario, I'm not against it.
After the Bucks complete pre-draft workouts, let's say they fall in love with two guys. Now let's say, the draft goes a little unconventional, and those two guys go in the top 10.
I have no problem with Milwaukee finding the right scenario to pick up another second round pick if a team like Houston wants to trade one of their picks at 14 or 16 to move up a few spots. If Milwaukee can still pick up the likes of say—Meyers Leonard or Tyler Zeller and snag an extra second rounder, by all means go for it.
While there isn't any talks like that rumored yet, don't immediately brush off any mention of it as a bad deal.
Nightmare: Get Swindled out of the No. 12 Pick
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While a good deal to move down a few spots could turn out to be reasonable, Milwaukee should be pretty much against anything that brings them out of the top 20.
At the risk of beating the point to death, the Bucks need an athletic big man.
The 2012 draft has a great selection of athletic big men.
Don't make me spell it out.
Milwaukee shouldn't make a move for the sake of making a move. They don't need to be addressing their needs in the free agency market, and only should consider a personnel trade for a very good power forward/center.
Ideally, the Bucks will likely stay put and get their man at No. 12. They have a good young core that will get up and down the floor. This draft is a great place to complement that.
Dream: Find a Gem in the Second Round
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According to a tweet from the Milwaukee Bucks' official Twitter account, nine players that the Bucks selected in the second round over the years played five or more games for teams around the NBA this season. That was the most out of any team.
Pretty impressive for a random statistic no one would ever think about.
Unfortunately, only two of them were playing for the Bucks last season.
Milwaukee can go a number of ways in the second round, and it all depends who is left on the board. Who they will take in the second round is still very much in the air, but don't be surprised if they do go the bigger small man route.
The second round will be host to a number of good players, including the likes of Kris Joseph, Chris Johnson, Scott Machado and Jae Crowder.
Hopefully, Milwaukee can find someone that they don't have to bury in the D-League or overseas for the season. An impactful rookie who can give valuable minutes off the bench would suit them just fine.
Nightmare: Drafting a Project on Top of a Project
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The biggest thing that Milwaukee has going for it is that fans are excited to see progress. With the addition of Monta Ellis and the prep of a full mini-camp, the Bucks should be a pretty entertaining show.
In recent years though, Milwaukee has been suffering from spotty relevance syndrome.
But cures can be found.
The pieces are falling into place for a great season, and expectations are running high. Fans believe that the time is now to be competitive once again in the East.
However, a draft without immediate results could ruin everything.
Without going into the details of the teams contract situation, Milwaukee is currently working with about a two year window to right the ship. The first step in doing that is putting the final players into place to be successful this season.
Player development is a natural part of the game, and it's understandable that rookies are going to need a learning curve. However, the Bucks don't have time to have guys sit and ripen on the bench.
The draft class this season will need to be a quick study.