Jrue Holiday and countless other Milwaukee Bucks currently in protocols

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JANUARY 05 (Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JANUARY 05 (Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images) /

Less than a week ago, the Milwaukee Bucks had their cleanest injury report of the season as the only listed member was Brook Lopez, who has been out after undergoing back surgery. It was fun while it lasted, but the Bucks’ injury report has once again started to grow with each passing hour.

As first reported by The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Jrue Holiday is the latest Buck to enter the league’s health and safety protocols. He joins three other players in Grayson Allen, George Hill, and Pat Connaughton in the protocols alongside head coach Mike Budenholzer. Along with them, the injury report includes Donte DiVincenzo listed as out due to a sprained ankle, Lopez out with rehabilitation, and Giannis Antetokounmpo listed as probable with a non-COVID-illness. With a big game on the horizon tomorrow night, the Bucks will have some major adjustments to make.

The Milwaukee Bucks will be put to the test with Jrue Holiday and three other key players in the health and safety protocols

Tomorrow’s game between the Bucks and the Brooklyn Nets has been circled on calendars for months. It is always box office when these two meet, and unfortunately, both sides are set to be without some crucial pieces. Headlined by Holiday, the Bucks injury report includes a handful of names, but the Nets will be without their starting point guard as well as Kyrie Irving cannot play home games due to his vaccination status.

Obviously, replacing what Holiday brings to the table for the Bucks is far easier said than done. The guard had been player All-Star caliber basketball on both sides o the ball for the defending champs this season, and losing him for the time being will be a tough blow. To make matters worse, the Bucks will be without their backup point guard in Hill as well, leaving two-way guard Javonte Smart as the only true point guard on the roster. This game will give the 22-year-old an opportunity to showcase what he brings to the table, and it will be interesting to monitor.

Losing Allen and Connaughton is clearly a devastating blow as well. Both have played the best basketball of their careers this season. Allen has provided an essential boost offensively in the starting five, while Connaughton has led the bench unit in scoring. Their absences open the door for players like Jordan Nwora, Wesley Matthews, Rodney Hood, and Semi Ojeleye to step up and try to fill the void for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Even with Antetokounmpo likely returning to the lineup and rejoining forces with Khris Middleton, taking down the Nets on the road will pose a sizeable challenge for the Bucks. It does take some of the excitement out of the matchup, knowing that both teams will be without several rotational pieces, but there are bound to be some fireworks regardless.

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We wish all the Bucks in the protocols are doing well and can make their way back into the lineup sooner rather than later. Be sure to catch tomorrow’s game against the Nets at 6:30 p.m. CST on ESPN.