Even with the Philadelphia 76ers in a historical freefall right now, the Milwaukee Bucks are still clinging to the worst record in the NBA. When you suffer a slew of injuries to an already sub-mediocre roster, that’s about the result you can expect to get, which is why the Bucks sit where they do right now.
Milwaukee suffered their 54th loss of the season on Sunday afternoon, falling victim to the suddenly surging Charlotte Bobcats by a score of 101-92. While the Bucks defense was torched by Charlotte, a customary thing for Milwaukee this year, the Bucks didn’t leave with all negatives from the contest.
Third-year point guard Brandon Knight quietly put forth a terrific effort on the afternoon. Playing 36 minutes, Knight put up 21 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and three steals while shooting 9-21 from the floor, 3-7 from three, and while turning the ball over only twice against a stingy Bobcats defense.
In his first season with the Bucks after coming over as part of the Brandon Jennings sign-and-trade with the Detroit Pistons, Knight has sneakily put together a solid effort for this struggling Milwaukee team. Playing 32.2 minutes per night, Knight has put up 17.4 points, 4.9 assists and 3.3 rebounds per night while shooting 42.2 percent from the floor. His three-point percentage has dipped, but his overall efficiency and production has seen a great deal of improvement this year.
While I still buy into the idea that Knight might be more of an undersized shooting guard than a point guard, it’s hard to deny that he’s taken noticeable steps forward in Milwaukee this season. Throughout this season, his shot selection has improved a great deal. He’s attacking the rim more often and getting to the foul line a solid 4.3 times per game this year.
The Bucks are certainly a wreck right now and are in serious need of rebuilding and their inevitable high lottery pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. However, Knight has proven as this season has gone on that he could be a piece worth keeping around and worth developing further at just 22 years old. He still has a ways to go and it’d be interesting to see how he’d perform with a position change, but Knight is well on his way to establishing himself as a solid contributor in this league.