After coming up short in back-to-back postseasons prior to this season, many started leaning towards the answer being no. There were some valid criticisms with Middleton, but ultimately, he put them to rest after the playoff run that he pieced together in 2021. Middleton’s efforts helped the Bucks snap their 50-year title drought, and although he was far from perfect, he proved to be the second-best player on a championship team. Where does he rank among the NBA’s best second options currently in the league after this eventful season? Let us find out.
Milwaukee Bucks: Ranking Khris Middleton among best second options: No. 5 – Jaylen Brown
Jaylen Brown’s 2020-21 season was unfortunately cut short after having suffered a torn ligament in his wrist, but he undeniably made the most of his 58 games.
In that time, the 24-year-old guard averaged 24.7 points while shooting 48.4 percent from the floor and 39.7 percent from deep, all three of those being new career highs. In addition to the huge leap he took on the offensive end, Brown had another reputable year defensively by averaging 1.2 steals and 0.6 blocks per game, both of which were also new career bests. Brown has quietly developed into one of the best up-and-coming defenders in the association, and his game on the offensive end in addition to that has made him a lethal two-way player.
Brown’s fantastic season helped him earn his first All-Star selection last season, and it was well deserved. The future appears bright for the fifth-year guard, and he is the perfect complementary piece next to Jayson Tatum for Boston. They are arguably the NBA’s best duo under 25-years-old, and they will be a force to be reckoned with in the Eastern Conference for years to come. If Brown can continue improving with each passing season, the sky is the limit for him.