Milwaukee Bucks: 3 crucial goals for Rodney Hood during 2021-22 season

PORTLAND, OREGON - MAY 09 (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OREGON - MAY 09 (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Khris Middleton, Cleveland Cavaliers: Rodney Hood
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – DECEMBER 10: (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Gal No. 3 — Rodney Hood staying consistent on defense for the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021-22

And finally, if Hood is on the floor and hitting his shots, he simply needs to be average defensively to truly make this a fantastic signing and rebuild his value with the Bucks.

He’s never been an elite defender, but there is a precedent that he can stay afloat at that end of the floor and not be completely played off in a playoff series. At 6-foot-8, 208 pounds, Hood has the frame to be able to guard bigger wing players, but the Achilles injury most likely has taken away some of his burst and quickness, so it’s fair to expect he’ll struggle in certain matchups.

According to FiveThirtyEight’s player rating metric RAPTOR, Hood has been within 0.5 points of even three times in the last five seasons in defensive RAPTOR. There really isn’t a perfect defensive metric as it’s hard to quantify individual defense with a number, but it’s a useful tool that can give us a broad outline of what a player is defensively.

There have also certainly been seasons where Hood isn’t as good, and that’s what the key for him will be. When he’s on the floor, as long as he’s not a complete liability, then he’ll prove very useful in higher leverage games in both the regular season and playoffs.

Most of the time, Hood will be surrounded by better defenders than him, whether that be Middleton, Jrue Holiday, Giannis Antetokounmpo, or even Donte DiVincenzo. No one should expect Hood to come in and be something he’s not, but if he can give the Bucks at least close to league average defense and he finds his shooting stroke again? Then this has the potential to be a real boon for the Bucks.

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There isn’t a lot of pressure on Hood this coming season, especially with the depth the Bucks have on the wing, but it will be up to Hood to hit some of these goals in order to not get lost in the shuffle among all the other options.