3 keys as the Milwaukee Bucks return home against the Chicago Bulls

Mar 4, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 4, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Grayson Allen
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – JANUARY 21 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Who will step up in Khris Middleton’s absence for the Milwaukee Bucks?

It is not only Giannis who will be injury/load managed down the stretch, apparently! Khris Middleton popped up on the injury report with “wrist soreness” (heavy emphasis on the quotation marks there) and will not play tonight.

Middleton has played 33 straight games and 38 of the last 39 coming into tonight so he’s been due for a rest game for some time now. We’ll likely see Jrue Holiday, Brook Lopez, and Bobby Portis rested with “soreness” coming up as well.

That will free up a spot in the starting line and, if this season has taught us anything, means we could be getting Starter Jordan Nwora! Or, you know, head coach Mike Budenholzer will be boring and start Pat Connaughton.

Or! He could get extra weird and start Antetokounmpo, Lopez, and Portis! That’s the least likely scenario, though.

Regardless, someone on the Bucks will need to step up to pick up what they’re missing in terms of scoring and playmaking from Middleton.

Nwora has been great when given the chance to start, averaging 14.5 points on 53.8 percent true shooting (nearly 41 percent from 3), but I have my eye on Grayson Allen as well.

In his last five games, Allen is averaging 10.2 points and shooting 50 percent from 3 on six attempts per game as well as nearly four boards and two assists. He hasn’t had the big scoring games that he did early in the season, but he’s been very solid under the radar.

He’s seemingly been better when one of the big three is out and he’s forced into a bigger offensive role and can do more things. He won’t provide the playmaking and ball-handling that Middleton does, but we could see Allen reach the 15-point mark for the first time since late February.

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

The Bucks are 5-7 without Middleton in the lineup this season, but the Bulls have also lost eight of their last 11 games and should be tired coming into tonight.