Bucks 2023-24 player profile: Khris Middleton’s health integral to a title challenge

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - APRIL 19 (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - APRIL 19 (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /

Injuries really hampered the Milwaukee Bucks last season, and one of those heavily affected was Khris Middleton. This off-season, he signed a new three-year deal worth $102m and underwent right knee surgery.

Age: 32 (Birthday is August 12)

Position: Small Forward

2023-24 Salary: $29.3 million

NBA Experience: 11 Years

Last Season’s Stats: 15.1 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.9 assists, 0.7 steals, 0.2 blocks, 43.6 percent field goal shooting, 31.5 percent 3-point shooting, 90.2 percent free throw shooting in 24.3 minutes.

Bucks 2023-24 player profile: Khris Middleton’s health integral to a title challenge

The big question mark around Middleton is his health. Hopefully his knee surgery in June was successful so the Bucks can see him on the floor more during the regular season.

In the 2022-23 season, Middleton managed to play just 33 regular season games, and despite impressing in the playoffs, new head coach Adrian Griffin will be hoping to have him available for a longer stretch of the season. With Giannis out in the playoffs, Middleton led with 23.8 points on 46.5 percent from the field and 40.6 percent from deep.

Offensively he is clearly the second option to Giannis and has always been a great complimentary piece alongside him and was of course integral to the title win in 2021. If the Bucks want to get back there, then they need him back to his best.

His ability to score on all levels and close out games has been big for the Bucks, but his lack of availability in the 2022 playoffs and last season has hampered Milwaukee. It is likely that at the beginning of the season, he doesn’t play heavy minutes and maybe misses a few games here and there for load management reasons.

Jrue Holiday made the All-Star team last year, and if Middleton can return to that level, then the Bucks will be one of the favorites to win the title. Add in Brook Lopez, Bobby Portis, and new additions to the roster to make the team younger and more athletic, the Bucks have a shot again and have really assessed the problems that caused them to exit the playoffs early.

This coming season, Middleton will likely work to build towards the playoffs. At 32 he can still have a huge impact on the season and hopefully if he stays healthy, the Larry O’Brien trophy can be lifted in Milwaukee again.

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Stay tuned for more Milwaukee Bucks analysis and player profiles for the upcoming NBA season.