3 Milwaukee Bucks players who need a strong regular season finish

Dec 17, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 17, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Serge Ibaka, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Miami Heat: Tyler Herro
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – MARCH 02 (Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images) /

Serge Ibaka needs to finish the regular season with the Milwaukee Bucks on a high note

With the return of Brook Lopez, Serge Ibaka has seen a sharp decline in playing time. Ibaka was an excellent piece to fill in for Lopez while recovering from surgery and who could play an important role when the playoffs roll around.

While Ibaka hasn’t been the player he was in his prime, he has still contributed in Milwaukee. On the season, Ibaka is averaging nearly seven points per game. Even better, Ibaka has found some success behind the three-point line as he boasts a 36 percent three-point percentage. While his offense has been key, his rim protection was even more important. While his defensive prowess has declined since his prime, Ibaka has still held his own against some of the league’s best bigs. Defense around the rim was poor in Lopez’s absence, and Ibaka was a perfect fill-in to bolster Milwaukee’s defense.

While Ibaka has struggled to find his way onto the court due to the logjam in the bigs rotation,  he could be playing a critical role in that rotation when the playoffs roll around. Due to the size of some teams in the Eastern Conference such as the Sixers the Nets, and the Cavs, a solid rotation of big men could be important. Ibaka may continue to see limited time down the stretch, but he should make the most of those minutes to earn himself a spot back in the team’s rotation.

If Ibaka plays well during the last week of the regular season, he may see some run in the playoffs. Ibaka’s veteran leadership will play an important role as well. Even if he doesn’t contribute on the court, he will certainly play a role as a leader for the team.