Milwaukee Bucks: 3 intriguing 2021 training camp battles to watch

Jan 4, 2021; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Nick Monroe/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports)
Jan 4, 2021; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Nick Monroe/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports) /
2 of 3
Milwaukee Bucks: Jordan Nwora
May 10, 2021; San Antonio, Texas, USA; Mandatory Credit: Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports /

2021 Milwaukee Bucks training camp battle: Jordan Nwora vs. Rodney Hood

While Ojeleye and Antetokounmpo will provide the Bucks with some defense, they will have to look elsewhere to shore up their shooting. Two players that could go toe-to-toe in that regard are Jordan Nwora and Rodney Hood, who each pose interesting cases to get key minutes.

For Nwora, the desire was there all throughout his rookie campaign in 2020-21. The second round pick never saw steady minutes in the rotation, but when he did, he showed glimpses of potential to the highest degree. With a quick trigger and smooth jumper, the rookie shot 45.2 percent from deep last season, although it came in a small sample size (28-of-62). Given the team’s reliance on the 3-point shot, Nwora’s case to earn minutes will be a prominent discussion once again among the fandom. While he did not exactly stand out in the 2021 Summer League with some lackluster performances, the soon-to-be sophomore has the potential to be a fantastic player on offense if he can improve his consistency and passing ability.

While Nwora is still an unproven 22-year-old, Hood finds himself under a far different set of circumstances. The seven-year veteran has experience playing at the highest level and has had a solid career to this point, but he has unfortunately battled through injuries extensively over the past two seasons. When healthy, Hood is a solid scorer and shooter than could hypothetically pack a massive punch off Milwaukee’s bench. Averaging 11.3 points per game and shooting a passable 36.7 percent from deep for his career, Hood could be a key contributor for this team in the second unit if he can bounce back from a down year in 2020-21. His seniority over Nwora makes it seem like he could earn those meaningful minutes on the wing behind players like Khris Middleton and Pat Connaughton, but that is not set in stone.

Ultimately, the Bucks will be looking for someone to help fill the “Bryn Forbes role” after he left the team in free agency. Essentially, that means they will need to find someone who can shoot the lights out from behind the arc and space the floor when Giannis Antetokounmpo is on the floor. Both Hood and Nwora could fill that role, but perhaps training camp could unlock some fiery completion between the two.