In less than two months, NBA teams will hit the hardwood after an always eventful off-season. The Milwaukee Bucks made a significant change within the team with the hiring of former NBA player and Raptors assistant coach Adrian Griffin.
With an almost entirely new staff, it is fair to expect that there will be sizeable changes on both ends for the Bucks. I am expecting fewer isolation possessions and more working as a team and working to create advantages based on certain players’ skills and taking advantage of mismatches. Khris Middleton will be a player to keep an eye on. Middleton did not look like himself at times while on the floor last year, but that was likely due to conditioning and health issues. With an offseason of rest, Middleton should be able to provide a hefty punch on the offensive end as a scorer and playmaker.
Predicting Khris Middleton’s 2023-24 stat line for the Milwaukee Bucks
2023-24 Prediction: 17.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 0.7 steals, 0.3 blocks while shooting 45.1 percent from the field, 36.8 percent from downtown, and 89.4 percent from the line in 30 minutes per contest.
Middleton declined his player option and opted to sign a more team-friendly three-year, $102 million deal. It will be nice to see Middleton open up the new season healthy and on a new contract. It’s safe to say that injury and age are becoming big factors for Middleton as he enters his 12th NBA season at 32 years old. After missing a large chunk of the 2022-2023 regular season, Middleton will look to bounce back.
Many people pointed out how slowed down Middleton looked at times last season, but what they do not understand is he was playing limited minutes and was sitting out games. The NBA hosts some of the top athletes in the world, and you are not going to reach peak physical performance unless conditioning is top-notch.
With that being said, I believe that Khris Middleton will bring a whole new impact to the team this season if he can stay healthy. I have Middleton marked down for a career-high 5.8 assists per game, and there are a couple of reasons for this. With coach Griffin coming in this season, I could see Middleton being the primary ballhandler in a lot of pick and rolls. He also has the best chemistry with Giannis Antetokounmpo out of anyone on the roster, and that brings great potential for him to have some big assist games.
All in all, my predicted numbers for Middleton are pretty similar to a lot of his years with the Bucks. I personally think Middleton will pump out some big number games, but not big enough to crack the 20 points per game mark. I predict that with the slight drop-off in points, there will be a slight rise in assists per game for Middleton.
His predicted shooting splits are a little better than the past two seasons. The reasoning for this is that Middleton could see more duties as a playmaker. After a tough end to the season, a new coaching staff and a healthy team should call for an exciting Bucks regular season. Missing a healthy Middleton has been a big factor as to why Milwaukee has had some postseason struggles these last two years and having him healthy to start the season is huge.
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