Milwaukee Bucks: 3 reasons why they can run it back next season

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 22: (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 22: (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Donte DiVincenzo, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, Jrue Holiday
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – MARCH 20 (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

All Milwaukee Bucks fans around the city of Milwaukee, state of Wisconsin and all around the world are still basking in the glow of glory.

The Bucks achieved immortality upon winning this year’s title after defeating the Phoenix Suns in six games during this year’s NBA Finals, giving the Bucks their first title in 50 years.

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The celebration isn’t ending anytime soon, but just around the corner stands the draft and free agency and this championship team could look different in short time. While questions regarding the futures of key contributors remain, the Bucks now face the prospect of having to defending their title next season.

So without further ado, let’s dive into three big reasons why the Bucks could make another run towards an NBA championship next season.

The Milwaukee Bucks’ core is locked down for the foreseeable future

Unlike last offseason where we weren’t short on speculation surrounding the Bucks, whether it was the supermax saga surrounding Giannis Antetokounmpo or how Milwaukee could improve their roster, the big questions have long been answered.

Antetokounmpo put an endless amount of speculation to bed when he signed his supermax extension before the start of the 2020-21 season and the Bucks made the big gamble to trade for Jrue Holiday and parting ways with plenty of draft capital. It’s safe to say that has already paid off, beyond just the fact that Holiday committed to a long-term extension to stay in Milwaukee midway through the year too.

With those in the mix as well as Khris Middleton under contract until 2024 (though he holds a $40.3 million player option in 23-24) and Brook Lopez under contract until 2023, the Bucks’ starting lineup is largely accounted for.

It’s within the supporting cast and on the margins that will be more of a challenge for the Bucks to reload. Bobby Portis has certainly outplayed his $3.8 million player option for next season and the Bucks will be hard-pressed to re-sign him with their mid-level exception unless if he takes a friendly discount. P.J. Tucker will also be heading for free agency as well, though the Bucks do have his Early Bird rights. While Bryn Forbes fell out of the Bucks’ rotation by the end of their title run, he could very well turn down his $2.4 million player option.

Complicating factors is Donte DiVincenzo and his foot injury that put a premature end to his season during the Bucks’ first round series with the Miami Heat. What his timeline for a full recovery looks like is unknown and the shorter offseason combined with the Bucks’ run to championship makes it that much more difficult.

It’s not all doom and gloom for the Bucks, despite the limited resources they have available in free agency and with the 31st overall pick in this year’s draft. Again, the bigger questions have been answered as far as the leading faces who will certainly carry the Bucks in their title defense next season.

It’s the playoff heroes that emerged both off the bench and in the starting lineup in Tucker’s case after DiVincenzo went down that will be hard to replace or address depending on what happens over the next couple of weeks.