Milwaukee Bucks: Meet the 2010s All-Decades Team

CHARLOTTE, NC - NOVEMBER 01: (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - NOVEMBER 01: (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks' Khris Middleton
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – OCTOBER 26: (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Milwaukee Bucks: Meet the 2010s All-Decade Team – Khris Middleton

Continuing our look at second round picks changing the course of the Bucks’ trajectory, it’s time to our attention to Khris Middleton.

The 39th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Middleton arrived to Milwaukee as part of the Brandon Jennings trade a year later following his rookie season with the Detroit Pistons. It was a move that Middleton initially worried for his future within the organization and the NBA itself as he later recounted to Sean Deveney of the Sporting News:

"“My first reaction when I was traded was, am I going to be cut? Am I going to make it?” he said. “If you are a second-round pick and you get traded, you are kind of in limbo that way. You are starting over. … I talked to Joe Dumars after it happened and John Hammond when I got to Milwaukee. Both were saying that I wasn’t a throw-in there. “John Hammond told me they were starting over and they were just looking for players who could play. They were rebuilding, and he wanted to see if I could fit and earn a job.”"

The Bucks’ plans for rebuilding initially resulted in plenty of pain and losing for that 2013-14 season, Middleton’s first with the Bucks. Yet it was a year in which Middleton took advantage of an opportunity for playing time and laid down the foundation to his prosperous career.

Middleton’s smooth scoring, lethal shooting and well-rounded abilities eventually took center stage in their own right and has made him the ideal complement next to the growing superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo (yeah, he’s making this list). All the while the Bucks’ rebuild progressed along the way and soared to new heights with the arrival of head coach Mike Budenholzer.

After breaking the 20 point per game barrier and playing like a man on fire during the Bucks’ first round playoff series against the Boston Celtics in 2017-18, Middleton finally made his first All-Star appearance in 2018-19 and made a repeat trip to the midseason classic this season.

Going from a trade throw-in, by all intents and purposes, to becoming a multi-time All-Star, Middleton has increasingly made his imprint on the upward swing the Bucks have enjoyed at this juncture. And he’s rising up the Bucks’ record books and currently ranks third with 875 made triples and stands behind Michael Redd and Ray Allen in that department.

In his 483 appearances with the Bucks, Middleton has averaged 16.8 points on .458/.394/.875 shooting splits, 4.8 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.3 steals across 32.3 minutes per game.