3 things to watch for in Milwaukee Bucks rematch with Charlotte Hornets

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - JANUARY 08: (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - JANUARY 08: (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Bobby Portis, Charlotte Hornets: Jalen McDaniels
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA – JANUARY 08 (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) /

Bobby Portis has seemed to take the words of Hornets star guard LaMelo Ball to heart when he said “new year, new me. Same me, though.”

Portis has been incredibly consistent since entering the starting lineup way back on November 7th. He’s scored in double figures with at least five rebounds in all 29 games and has a made 3-pointer in all but two of those games as well.

Even after returning from health and safety protocols, which can have lingering effects on players, Portis has been the same player as he was when he went in.

In the nine games he’s played since exiting the protocols, Portis is averaging a near double-double with 16 points and 10 boards. His efficiency might be the best part too. He’s shooting over 54 percent from 3 on over four attempts per game, helping lead to a 63 percent true shooting and 61.5 percent effective field goal rate.

He’s recorded double-doubles in three of his six games to start 2022, including both games of their back-to-back against Brooklyn and Charlotte.

Portis has shown the ability to mold himself into whatever role the Bucks need from him this season. He can be the fourth option behind the big three or be a top-three option (like he has been the last couple of games) and still maintain excellent efficiency while also doing the dirty work on the glass.

At 26-years-old, Portis is in the prime of his career and could be the long-term solution for the Bucks at center with Brook Lopez aging and dealing with injury issues.

Most fans know that he has a player option at the end of this season and it’s likely that he opts out once again. The Bucks will be able to offer him more money than they did this past offseason, but perhaps Portis decides to really cash in.

Next. Assessing the Milwaukee Bucks’ biggest needs before 2022 trade deadline. dark

For now, though, The People’s Champ is one of the big reasons the Bucks have been able to stay afloat this season through all the injuries and illnesses.