With the 2023 NBA season quickly approaching, the Milwaukee Bucks have some minor tweaking to do with their starting lineup. We can all agree that Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jrue Holiday, Brook Lopez, and Khris Middleton will find themselves in the starting unit, but who will be the fifth?
It could be a variety of players that find themselves filling that void in the lineup. However, it’ll boil down to either veteran starter Grayson Allen, who started 70 of the 72 games he played in for Milwaukee last year, or offseason signee Malik Beasley. Both bring a lot to the table and can add a great element to the starting lineup. Yet, one of these players will be a better and more consistent fit in the starting lineup for the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2023-2024 season.
Should the Milwaukee Bucks start Grayson Allen or Malik Beasley?
The case for Grayson Allen starting: As mentioned above, Allen started all but two games for the Milwaukee Bucks that he played last year. It was a career-high for him in starts, as he surpassed his 2021 total of 61 starts. With over 130 games started for the Milwaukee Bucks in the last two years, Allen not only has more experience with the starting unit but also a better understanding of the proper floor spacing to have with a drive-heavy offense.
For as much as Allen brings to the table, he also misses the mark in other aspects. Defensively, he is the weak link in a lineup that features top-tier defensive players. He had the worst defensive rating on the Milwaukee Bucks in 2022 among the starters, per Stat Muse. With Adrian Griffin, who preaches defense, in charge, we could see Allen’s role as a starter take a bit of a back seat.
Where he saves himself some and keeps his name in that first-five unit is his shooting ability. At nearly 40 percent from three last year and almost 41 percent the year before, he’s proven to be a weapon on the perimeter for the Milwaukee Bucks. He’s even shown the ability to put the ball on the floor and score in the paint when ran off the 3-point line.
Although he’s been a knockdown shooter for the Milwaukee Bucks, he’s also found himself suffering from cold streaks from downtown. In last year’s Eastern Conference semifinals showdown with the Boston Celtics, he went a combined 5-for-24 from deep, which included four games of not registering a made three.
With streaky shooting and inconsistent defense, Allen could find himself on the outside of the starting lineup for the first time in his Milwaukee Bucks career.