3 early 2022 NBA Draft prospects for the Milwaukee Bucks to consider

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Ohio State Buckeyes: E.J. Liddell
Sun., Jan. 9, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Liddell 1 /

Early 2022 NBA Draft prospects the Milwaukee Bucks should consider: E.J. Liddell, forward, Ohio State

I went with a freshman and then a sophomore, so why not finish it up with a junior. I’m very intrigued by E.J. Liddell as he’s someone that people aren’t sure where he’ll fit positionally in the league, but has made strides this season to become more NBA-ready.

At 6’7″ and 240 pounds, Liddell seems like someone who could be that small-ball four alongside Giannis Antetokounmpo when he plays at center. The Milwaukee Bucks were never really able to find that “P.J. Tucker-type” of big wing defender, but Liddell would be an option there; but not at the same level as a defender, of course, just in terms of the frame.

He’s averaging 2.6 blocks per game this season, showcasing his defensive prowess, and could be a defender in the mold of Grant Williams from the Boston Celtics. I like the frame and I like the shot-blocking feel, it would just be about getting him ready to guard NBA wings as soon as possible.

Offensively, Liddell may not be the easiest fit. He posts up a lot, which is fine in college but wouldn’t play in the league and especially not with the Bucks. He’s averaging over 19 points per game and shooting 54.3 percent on 2s. He’d be interesting as a bench scoring piece with his post-ups, but if he’s on the floor with the big three, then he’d need to be comfortable shooting the 3.

That’s where Liddell has made the biggest improvements to his draft stock, though. He’s shot 40 percent on nearly four attempts from deep in his last 19 games and his free throw shooting (78.6 percent on nearly seven attempts) suggests that can be close to sustainable (likely around 37-38 percent at the high end in the NBA) going forward.

Teams are reportedly confused about where Liddell could play but I’d be interested in the Bucks taking a chance on this type of skillset and seeing how he’d fit later.

Next. Ranking 5 potential first round opponents for the Milwaukee Bucks. dark

I’ve been a big advocate for the Bucks keeping that first-round pick to find a potential impact player in the mid-to-late 20s as opposed to continuing to take swings late in the second round.