Milwuakee Bucks: Playoff Contender? Absolutely!

David JohnsonContributor INovember 8, 2008

I've written about the Milwaukee Bucks chemistry already, but never saw Michael Redd getting injured as a positive for the entire team.

Simply stated: Michael Redd is underrated!

This is obvious, even if you don't like the Bucks, or, for whatever reason, Michael Redd himself. He has carried the team for the past years despite the team being an overall disappointment to a lot of fans.

The big question this offseason was, can all the new faces get it done, and I'll say it again: Yes!

Try to choose who's the bigger face: Richard Jefferson, Luke Ridinour, Scott Skiles, or Hammound. The answer is all of them. They each play equal roles in the Milwaukee Bucks' success this year, and they will get it done.

Michael Redd getting injured means that some other player on the court has to be the primary scorer. This has to be a miracle, or you tell me a better scenario of opportunity for Richard Jefferson to not only shine, but to find his role in a Milwaukee Bucks uniform.

Not that Jefferson hasn't played well thus far, because he has, but a lot of purely NBA fans want to see him return to his slashing, scoring, electrifying form.

With Michael Redd allowing his ankle to heal, Richard Jefferson wasted no time in taking over, scoring 52 points with 11 assists over two games versus healthy playoff teams in the Wizards and champion Celtics.

I could be wrong and biased, but I'd say Richard Jefferson has definitely found his swagger. Now combine that with Michael Redd's humble ability to score 25-30 a night, and you're looking at a contender.

If Jefferson continues to develop his confidence and Michael Redd comes back healthy and scoring, with Milwaukee's version of Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, they are still missing one factor: a big time post player.

Any sane person would say, "Well what about the former number one overall draft pick, Andrew Bogut?", but Bogut is not playing up to his potential. I've almost been forced to believe in Bogut as he signed a Dwight Howard-like contract this off-season, but he has to play stronger.

He is a big man and has the ability to dominate down low, he just gets too lazy too often, and he just can't keep playing soft. When a Redd or Jefferson jumper comes off Bogut needs to go up with intensity to get that rebound and kick it out with a fresh 24.

He'll come around, but no one knows when.

On top of that Ridinour is playing exactly like Scott Skiles wants him to. 

He's only holding the ball seven or eight seconds down the court, much different than Mo Williams, who holds possession for 15 seconds, or more, in transition. It proves a huge difference and the Buck's chemistry is the main benefactor.

Charlie Villanueva has surprised me a lot. I predicted that Dan Gadzuric would get the start in Skiles' new defensive mindset, but Charlie has been getting the job done, or enough to remain in the starting lineup.

Gadzuric is getting a lot of playing time, as he should, but—I'll admit—Charlie's not playing bad.

What a genius move to find Ramon Sessions some playing time off the bench. At the two guard, he's too quick for most number twos. Sure, he's not as good as Michael Redd, especially on the defensive side, but he provided some spark, especially in the victory over Washington.

All in all, the Bucks look fantastic this season despite only being .500 right now. They are giving playoff teams a run for their money, and should continue to develop chemistry as the season progresses.