Milwaukee Bucks: 3 non-stars that will dictate playoff success in 2022

CLEVELAND, OHIO - FEBRUARY 05: (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO - FEBRUARY 05: (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Bobby Portis
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – MAY 15: (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Bobby Portis is a player who will dictate playoff success for the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021-22

I don’t think I need to tell Bucks fans how important Bobby Portis is, but I will anyway! Strictly from an energy perspective, there is so much value in what Portis can bring. He’s energetic and gets the crowd going with his high effort and intensity. He’s always looking for energy plays, whether it’s offensive rebounds or a big dunk, Portis knows how to fire up a crowd and his teammates.

Beyond that, what Portis can bring to a lineup, is also important to a Bucks playoff series. Starting with his shooting, despite his 3-point percentage dropping in the playoffs (as was expected), the threat of Portis as a knockdown shooter is important when spacing the floor for Antetokounmpo and Holiday to get to the rim. Then the big man also has the ability and awareness to hustle in from the 3-point line and grab offensive rebounds for extra possessions.

The most crucial part of Portis’ game will be on defense, however. As of now, Portis remains the lone backup big man on the roster that is playoff-ready so him being able to hold his own on defense in the playoffs will be of great importance. The Bucks were able to get by last year in their second-round series against the Brooklyn Nets because of P.J. Tucker’s ability to guard bigger players, but with some question marks surrounding Semi Ojeleye, Portis’ defense will have an even bigger spotlight.

I do believe in Portis being able to hold his own at that end of the floor, but he will be targeted by teams like the Nets in a playoff series. It’s up to Portis to withstand that, stay locked in on defense, and keep making high-energy plays on offense.

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Of course, the Bucks will go as far as their big three will take them, but without the support of these key role players, the stars can only take them so far.