How will NBA call-ups impact the shorthanded Wisconsin Herd?

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 19: (Photo by Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 19: (Photo by Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images) /
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Wisconsin Herd: Tremont Waters
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 19 (Photo by Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images) /

In the past few weeks, teams have been battling a surge of COVID-19 cases in team facilities. To prevent postponing games, the NBA has decided that teams will be allowed to sign replacement players to 10-day hardship exceptions contracts to fill out rosters. NBA teams have looked to the G-League to find those replacement players. The Wisconsin Herd, the Milwaukee Bucks G-League affiliate, have had four players called up to the NBA.

With key offensive players and strong defensive players on the big stage, how will these call-ups impact the Herd? Let’s take a look.

Wisconsin Herd falls in Winter Showcase following call-ups from key contributors

The Herd were able to secure the top seed in the Central Division in the Showcase Cup qualifiers. In their first matchup in the Showcase Cup, the Herd fell to the South Bay Lakers. Wenyen Gabriel, who was called up to the Brooklyn Nets, did not play in this game and his defensive presence was missed. Despite battling to the end, the Herd were unable to capture the victory.

In the days following, players such as Rayjon Tucker, Tremont Waters, and Jemerrio Jones were all called up to NBA rosters. Tucker, the Herd’s scoring leader this season, was called up by the Minnesota Timberwolves. Jemerrio Jones, who spent time in Los Angeles previously, was called up to the Los Angeles Lakers. Tremont Waters, a former Buck, was called up to the Toronto Raptors. Each player was a key contributor for Wisconsin, and their presence was sorely missed in their matchup against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants.

Despite a big performance by Lindell Wigginton, the Mad Ants took full control of the game and eventually pulled off a 155-103 blowout victory. Wigginton and Jalen Lecque played a large part in the game, but without Tucker, Waters, and Jones, the Mad Ants were able to secure a huge victory.

This first glimpse at the Herd without some of their stars was a litmus test on what to expect while they are away, and it may have given some answers as to how the Herd will move forward without them.