Milwaukee Bucks Starting 5: Locks, fringe, and break-ins for 2021-22

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MARCH 20 (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MARCH 20 (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Donte DiVincenzo
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – MARCH 20 (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Milwaukee Bucks Starting Lineup: Who are the fringe candidates?

Donte DiVincenzo

This is where things start to get interesting for the Bucks and their starting five. Donte DiVincenzo started at shooting guard for Milwaukee for all of last season until he got hurt in their first round series with the Miami Heat. Undergoing season-ending surgery on his ankle, there are questions as to whether or not he will be healthy enough by the start of next season, and even if he is back to full strength, whether or not he would be the ideal choice to start alongside Holiday in the backcourt.

DiVincenzo’s improved 3-point shooting and robust defensive presence helped the 22-year-old make the transition into the starting lineup this past season. The biggest issue he faced was his consistency, as some nights he would be fantastic on both ends, while others he was practically a liability. A championship-caliber team like the Bucks might not be keen on having the soon-to-be fourth-year guard continue going through this roller coaster ride on a nightly basis. Demoting him back to the bench in a role he played throughout the first two seasons of his career might take a hit on his confidence, but it could potentially help his game. Nevertheless, he will get consideration in the starting five.

Grayson Allen

If Donte DiVincenzo is not in the starting five, Grayson Allen is the player likeliest to be the one stepping in for him. The Bucks acquired Allen in a recent trade with the Memphis Grizzlies that saw them ship out Sam Merrill and two future second round picks, so they clearly believe he can be a contributor. Although Allen has played the same amount of seasons as DiVincenzo with three, he is three years older and brings some maturity to the lineup. If DiVincenzo is indeed not ready to begin the season on time, Allen’s place in the starting five is practically cemented.

Much like DiVincenzo, Allen brings shooting and tenacious defense to the table. While the former has shot just 34.9 percent from three his career, Allen has been better by shooting 38.1 percent in the same timeframe. That outside shot would help Allen fit seamlessly in the starting lineup to give the Bucks more floor spacing alongside Antetokounmpo. Defensively, he would be another solid defensive piece to throw alongside the four others in this lineup to form a formidable unit. The biggest question right now is just how healthy DiVincenzo is, but regardless, Allen will get some thought to be the opening night starter at the minimum.