Milwaukee Bucks: Ranking every player on the 2021-22 roster

Jul 20, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 20, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Brook Lopez, Bobby Portis, Pat Connaughton
Jul 17, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

Ranking the 2021-22 Milwaukee Bucks — No. 5: Bobby Portis

Bobby Portis defied expectations with the Bucks last season by having arguably the best season of his career, although his numbers would not indicate it. While he puts up quality numbers, the big man impacted the game beyond just scoring, rebounding, and shooting. It was his endless drive and determination that helped him find a niche in the rotation and play a vital role for the Bucks throughout the final two rounds of the playoffs, even starting in two games.

Fans were thrilled when Portis returned to the Bucks in free agency as he showed a commitment to the city and the fanbase that has embraced him so dearly. After the year he had in 2020-21, he will be right back playing a meaningful part for the team next season. He and Connaughton will lead the charge in the second unit, and if all goes according to plan, Portis could perhaps get his share of recognition in the 2021-22 Sixth Man of the Year running. 

Ranking the 2021-22 Milwaukee Bucks — No. 4: Brook Lopez

At times last season, Brook Lopez was viewed as obsolete and the odd man out for the Bucks. When the team would run small-ball lineups, Lopez would watch from the sidelines as his team closed out several games without him in the fold. Many even vouched for the team to try and find a trade partner to offload him entirely. Ultimately, any talk of that vanished in the playoffs as the center played a vital role for the Bucks due to his elite rim protection and scoring ability – notably his 33 points in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

Lopez will be right back in the mix next season as Milwaukee’s starting center. While the Bucks will certainly run small-ball when the situation calls for it, that does not take away from Lopez’s value to this team. He is a key contributor for the team on both ends of the floor, and any talk of trading him should have faded away entirely after the playoffs. Those talks will likely pop up again next season at some point, but after remembering Lopez’s block on Kevin Durant in Game 7 against the Brooklyn Nets, they should quiet down.