3 burning questions for the Milwaukee Bucks down the stretch

CLEVELAND, OHIO - JANUARY 26: (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO - JANUARY 26: (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Brook Lopez
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – MARCH 29 (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /

Can the Milwaukee Bucks stay healthy for the playoffs?

In the past week alone, the Bucks have had to play at least one game without each of their three best players. Two stars should make them formidable, but it’s only when their Big Three of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday share the court together that they truly look like a championship contender.

The Bucks are still elite when their Big Three plays together. From here on out, it’s a matter of making sure they’re available to do just that against the other titans of the Eastern Conference.

Pat Connaughton also just came back and is playing like he was never sidelined with injury. They’ve also been missing Brook Lopez for practically their entire season. And in just his first few games back, the difference is already clear, especially on the defensive end. Lopez’s teammates sang his praises after their win against the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday, March 23. Giannis told reporters:

"“It’s been great. Brook is a cheat code, you know. He can rebound the ball, he can score the ball for us, he can make threes, and his defense is just unbelievable. He just makes it tough for everybody that comes in the paint. I’m just so happy that he’s back.”"

Antetokounmpo also pointed to the versatility that Lopez affords the team, saying he allows them to play big once more. Although the sample size is rather minuscule, lineups that included Antetokounmpo, Portis, and Lopez were a net plus-33.9 in the team’s championship-winning run just a few months ago per Cleaning the Glass. In those few possessions, the opposition shot a torrid 44.4 effective field goal percentage. Both stats would be good for the 100th percentile in the league.