It’s never good when an athlete uses Twitter to announce an injury, only to remove the tweet a few hours later. That’s exactly the situation Brandon Jennings found himself in on Tuesday.
Brandon Jennings has been the most-covered of any Milwaukee Buck this offseason, and for good reason. The point guard is the most important position in basketball, he’s the most recognizable player on the Bucks, and his offseason improvements will be the difference between playoff contention and a top 15 pick in the draft.
That’s why the prospect of Jennings breaking a finger on a dunk (see below) is so scary. If this is true, Jennings likely won’t miss any regular season games, but his offseason schedule is guaranteed to take a blow to the gut. Jennings has said all the right things over the past month about understanding what it takes to become an All-Star-caliber point guard, so it’ll be very disheartening if a broken finger on either hand hinders his training regimen.
If we get any concrete verification about the injury, Jennings will undoubtedly face criticism for being reckless and self-serving. However, Jennings isn’t any different than some of the best players in the NBA. They all play offseason pick-up exhibitions and they all show off a bit because of the lighthearted nature of those games. Jennings just may have been caught on camera in an unlucky situation.
If you’ve already taken a look at the Milwaukee Bucks 2011-12 schedule, there’s probably a part of you quietly rooting for the lockout to last into the start of the season. Last year, Milwaukee rang in 2011 with a brutal stretch of games against some elite opponents. Apparently 2012 won’t be much different if the season starts on time.
I’ve always been a fan of SI’s Zach Lowe, and reading his piece on how Bucks point guard Brandon Jennings can back up his All-Star talk made me like him even more. Lowe breaks down some film and adds in a few words of encouragement for the brash youngster, including this:
“When he does continue toward the hoop, he’s not yet able to make split-second passes consistently. The video is filled with images of Carlos Delfino and Salmons standing in the corner, wide open with their hands up, waiting for a pass that never comes. There are also lots of clips where Jennings draws that third defender at the rim and can’t manage to squeeze one of those interior passes to the big man who has just come open right next to him.”
Basically, Lowe says that Jennings has all the ability and smarts to make split second decisions required of elite point guards, it could just be a matter of confidence and experience in determining if he can get to that point this offseason.
Apparently Drew Gooden isn’t the only Bucks player with an affinity towards throwing himself an alley-oop. Jennings showed some hops in a Baltimore pick-up game on Monday night by grabbing a rebound, sprinting the length of the court, tossing the ball against the backboard, and slamming it down with a little extra rim-hanging mustard than we’re used to seeing on the NBA court. Don’t be surprised to see Jennings campaign for inclusion into the 2011-12 NBA All-Star Dunk Contest, provided he isn’t injured and there is a season.
Brew Hoop has decided to fill the vast, innocuous vacuum of nothing news we now call the NBA lockout period with a “Good Cop, Bad Cop” series of posts analyzing the best and worst aspects of each Bucks player. It’s quite enjoyable, and Steve von Horn’s most recent post on Beno Udrih produced this wonderful gem:
“When the offense gets bogged down, clogged up, or loses its flow, I anticipate that a dose of Draino should do the trick on most nights.”