The Milwaukee Bucks acquired a top notch sixth man in shooting guard J.J. Redick in a NBA deadline trade with the Orlando Magic. This means Mike Dunleavy needs to start games instead of come off the bench.
Currently, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute starts at small forward for Milwaukee. However, the defensive specialist has no definite offensive game, which means he has no business being in the starting lineup. In the Bucks win over the Dallas Mavericks Tuesday night, Mbah a Moute had seven points and five rebounds in 27 minutes while converting 50 percent of his shots. Believe it or not, this is the most productive he has been in quite some time.
Dunleavy recorded 13 points and one assist in 29 minutes while shooting 55.5 percent from the field and 40.0 percent from beyond the arc. The 32-year-old clearly played more minutes than Mbah a Moute, but Milwaukee really needs him on the court right away to avoid early scoring deficits such as the one they faced last night when Dallas got off to an 11-0 start. The Bucks have proven they have the capability to come back after being down because of their superior outside shooters, but there should really be no reason to risk having to do that game in and game out.
With Redick playing outstanding in his first two games with the Bucks, it is clear the team will be safe with Dunleavy starting at small forward. This will give Milwaukee a great outside shooter in the first lineup that they really do not have otherwise. Obviously, power forward Ersan Ilyasova is capable of knocking down a three-pointer while guards Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings have been known to hit their fair share of shots. However, Dunleavy would give the starting lineup that extra edge the team desperately needs.
Mbah a Moute could then come in for relief at the position and with Redick on the court, the Bucks are really not losing a whole lot. Obviously, head coach Jim Boylan will still have to find a way to utilize Dunleavy and the three guards together because that is clearly working. Also, the more Dunleavy and Redick are on the court at the same time the better, but I still feel that one of those two amazing shooters need to start.