Milwaukee Bucks: What mindset is most important heading into training camp?

OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 8: (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 8: (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The long road to a potential NBA title begins for the Milwaukee Bucks as they open their training camp on Tuesday. With that, what kind of mindset is important for the Bucks to attain as they start preparing for the 2019-20 season?

At long last, Milwaukee Bucks basketball is here. Well, in a roundabout way.

The start of the 2019-20 season may be less than a month away for all of us that have endured a Bucks-less summer and early fall, but the work now begins for Milwaukee, who will kick off their training camp in Madison after Monday’s Media Day session.

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A busy offseason spent holding on to many of the significant contributors that made their 2018-19 campaign an incredibly special one as well as making some shrewd veteran-laden free agent additions laid the groundwork to build out their roster for the coming year.

Now the time has come to integrate the core players that the Bucks have long developed and added over recent seasons with the critical pickups that will all look to make their mark on a squad that finished as the Eastern Conference runners-up last season.

Incorporating the group of offseason additions and acclimating them to the tenets and system reigning NBA Coach of the Year Mike Budenholzer brought with him to Milwaukee last season, along with his staff, will be a key theme and storyline all Bucks fans will be following throughout the camp.

But what may be most important for the Bucks, especially for those that experienced such towering highs with the team last season before enduring a bitter, stunning collapse in the Eastern Conference Finals, is the stinging feeling that still remains from that series defeat to last season’s NBA champions, the Toronto Raptors.

Turning the page from that loss will be on the minds of all Bucks mainstays going into next season and it will be a long way until the Bucks are able to avenge the playoff heartbreak that soured such an incredibly successful season for the organization all around.

What it can do, though, is provide the proper motivation needed to spark the Bucks and set the tone for the long, arduous season that will come, especially under a bright spotlight.

Whereas last year’s training camp was spent instituting the principles that Budenholzer sought to implement in his new surroundings, which will be maintained throughout his second training camp in charge, the reminder of how far they came in Budenholzer’s introductory year will certainly be preached over the preseason.

And it’s the way that things ended for the Bucks last year that can supply the hunger that will surely be needed to inspire what will be a long journey ahead.

With the arrival of Budenholzer as well as vital additions such as Brook Lopez and depth pieces like Pat Connaughton and the return of Ersan Ilyasova, Milwaukee managed to put together one of the most successful seasons in franchise history. They climbed to the top of the league and turned into a fearsome unit in a way that very few saw coming going into the season.

Reaching that level of success is notable, but sustaining it is the key for the Bucks going into Budenholzer’s second year.

The 2019-20 season is shaping up to be one of the most significant seasons in Bucks history for reasons both on and off the court. And the outcome of the coming year will determine the long-term future of the team, specifically as it relates to their superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Topping the mark of 60 wins and a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals is a mighty challenge, even for a team that finally realized their long-held aspirations last year. But even with the changes made this summer, much of the foundation remains the same and it gives the Bucks a real chance to seek a potential second NBA title.

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Whether the end to last season will provide the proper motivation needed to build on the standard that set for last season remains to be seen, but it will be a key ingredient to make 2019-20 a similarly rewarding campaign as last year.