The 2022 NBA Draft has come and gone, the Milwaukee Bucks left the draft with MarJon Beauchamp and Hugo Besson. A pair of wing players with vastly different skill sets. Let’s grade the picks.
Milwaukee Bucks draft pick grades: MarJon Beauchamp
The Milwaukee Bucks selected MarJon Beauchamp with the 24th overall pick and as soon as his name was announced Beauchamp burst into tears. That type of emotion reminds me of seeing Giannis Antetokounmpo overcome with emotion after the Bucks won the NBA Championship in 2021. While initial reactions may be somewhat unfavorable or confusion due to a guy like EJ Liddell still being available, getting a player that is so overcome with emotion to be joining the organization that he can’t hold back waves of tears speaks to me that Beauchamp will give everything he has to the team.
On the court the most common player comparison thrown out for MarJon Beauchamp has been Matt Barnes, who carved out a very respectable 16 year career. During Barnes’ rookie season he shot 15.4 percent on 3-point attempts, through his career finished with a 33.5 percent average from 3-point range. Beauchamp comes in having shot 24.2 percent on threes with the G-League Ignite team in 12 games, previously at Yakima Valley College in 12 games Beauchamp shot 39.8 percent on 3-point attempts, so it is conceivable that the confidence and ability to develop a perimeter shot is there.
Comparing Beauchamp to Barnes makes sense also on the defensive end and both players would fit the culture started by PJ Tucker during the championship run about being dogs. Matt Barnes was absolutely a defensive dog and didn’t back down from any players in the league. MarJon Beauchamp carries that dog mentality as well. Despite being just 6’5 his wingspan is over 7 feet! That type of length will be very valuable to the Milwaukee Bucks when it comes to addressing one of the team’s biggest Achilles’ heels during the Budenholzer era, defending the 3-point line. In addition to perimeter defense, Beauchamp’s length will also help the Bucks defend passing lanes and add length to a lineup that could include Jrue Holiday, Beauchamp, Khris Middleton, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Brook Lopez. That lineup is all length and can make things very difficult for opposing offenses.
Considering the players the Bucks passed on to draft Beauchamp is tough to do before any of them have played a minute in the NBA, and when considering Beauchamp has taken a non-traditional route to the NBA that could potentially scare fans. Some may have wanted the Bucks to select EJ Liddell, Wendell Moore, Nikola Jovic or UW-Milwaukee product Patrick Baldwin, but Jon Horst and the Milwaukee Bucks must have seen something in Beauchamp that they didn’t see in those players, hopefully Beauchamp will shine in the NBA Summer League which the Bucks begin on July 8th.
Final Grade: B
Milwaukee Bucks draft pick grades: Hugo Besson
In an undisclosed trade the Milwaukee Bucks moved into the second round after their original second round pick was taken away by the NBA for the Bucks being penalized for tampering with Bogdan Bogdanovic ahead of the 2020-21 season. With the 58th pick the Milwaukee Bucks selected Hugo Besson of the New Zealand Breakers.
As I mentioned previously mentioned Besson has a dramatically different skill set from MarJon Beauchamp. Whereas Beauchamp is a defensive minded player with a questionable outside shot, Hugo Besson was drafted to grow into a future sharpshooter. Besson likely won’t see much if any playing time with the Milwaukee Bucks this season, he will have ample opportunity to continue developing his game with the Wisconsin Herd.
Hugo Besson has some decent ball handling skills and a silky smooth jump shot. Besson is not afraid to shoot from anywhere on the court, whether driving to the basket or firing from several feet behind the 3-point line. So while Besson may not make a large impact with the Milwaukee Bucks in his rookie season, it is fun to imagine a sniper from the 3-point line that can get hot in a hurry, something the Bucks have looked to add around Giannis with players like Kyle Korver or Bryn Forbes in previous years.
Final Grade: B+
Stay tuned because the Milwaukee Bucks will likely look to sign some undrafted players to bring to Summer League and maybe to the Wisconsin Herd to develop.