The Milwaukee Bucks made the NBA Playoffs this year as the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference, despite having a sub .500 record. They were promptly eliminated from the postseason by the Miami Heat in a four-game sweep, despite Brandon Jennings’ foolish prediction that the Bucks would defeat the defending champions in six games.
Now Milwaukee faces an off-season where a multitude of changes are likely going to happen. They are currently searching for a new head coach, seemingly interviewing new candidates daily. Their roster is also going to undergo major changes throughout this summer, though, as many of their key players from this past season likely won’t be with the team anymore.
The Bucks starting backcourt from this past season of Jennings and Monta Ellis will almost certainly be gone this summer. Jennings will become a restricted free agent this summer and the Bucks seem set to not match any high-dollar offer given to Jennings. Ellis has a player option to stay with the Bucks next season, but all signs point to him not taking the option and entering unrestricted free agency.
This past season, Jennings and Ellis combined for 36.7 points, 12.5 assists and seven rebounds per game for the Bucks, leading the team in scoring. They also dominated the offense by taking 33.1 shot attempts per game, another category that they led Milwaukee in for the season. However, Ellis shot just 41.6 percent of the field and Jennings just 39.9 percent.
Though Jennings and Ellis dominated the ball and the offense for the Bucks last season, the team will be better off in the long run without either player there. Both players are inefficient shooters that don’t really improve the play of their teammates. Their styles of play essentially leave a team stagnant and unable to grow.
With the two of them gone, though, the Bucks will be able to further develop young players like Ersan Ilyasova, Larry Sanders and John Henson. They may not make the playoffs next season, but they will likely get a high draft pick and will have young players that have garnered a ton of experience. It may not be a good year for them next season, but their future will be much better without Jennings and Ellis.