Milwaukee Bucks: 3 reasons why fans will never forget P.J. Tucker

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 22 (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 22 (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: P.J. Tucker, Phoenix Suns: Devin Booker
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – JULY 20 (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /

Shortly after the Milwaukee Bucks won the 2020-21 NBA title, everyone expected it to be an open and shut case when it came to P.J. Tucker’s impending free agency.

It seemed inevitable that the newly crowned champions would hand the fan-favorite an extension the moment that they were allowed to, but things did not pan out that way. Shockingly, the Bucks let Tucker walk and he ended up signing a deal with the Miami Heat, one of their most prominent rivals within the Eastern Conference. It still stings nearly two months later, and it will only become worse once the Bucks play the Heat and see Tucker wearing an opposing jersey.

Although his time with the franchise was rather short, totaling just 43 games between both the regular season and playoffs, the forward helped make many memories along the way. With that being said, here are three reasons why Bucks fans will never forget Tucker after a turbulent year in 2020-21 that resulted in the city’s first title in 50 years.

Reasons why Milwaukee Bucks fans will never forget P.J. Tucker – His on-court contributions throughout the title run

The Bucks traded for Tucker back in March because they wanted to bulk up their defense before the postseason.

Tucker had built a reputation in this league with his hard-nosed presence on that side of the basketball, and he is someone that head coach Mike Budenholzer would give a massive role from the moment he set foot in town. Tucker’s already well-established role would increase during the postseason after the devastating season-ending injury to starting guard Donte DiVincenzo. That injury forced Tucker to slot into the starting five, where he would remain for the final three rounds of the postseason.

He faced a tall order immediately by having to guard Kevin Durant for second consecutive games as the Bucks battled the Brooklyn Nets in the East Semifinals. While he did not shut down Durant offensively, Tucker did his part to make sure the two-time NBA Finals MVP would have to work persistently to get every shot off. In the end, all the blood, sweat, and tears that he left on the court in that series paid off as the Bucks advanced. While his contributions were significant in the final two rounds against the Atlanta Hawks and Phoenix Suns, it was that Brooklyn series where he truly shined.

Offensively, it was not exactly the greatest showing for Tucker throughout the 23 playoff games as he averaged just 4.3 points while shooting 38.8 percent from the floor and 32.2 percent from behind the arc. Some like to say that this was a reason why the team was more willing to let him go in free agency, but Tucker was never set to play a key role on that side of the basketball. With an array of talented minds offensively, the Bucks brought him in to improve the defense, and he did just that.