Bucks Roundtable: Reflecting on a crazy off-season and what comes next

Oct 17, 2023; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA: Rob Ferguson-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 17, 2023; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA: Rob Ferguson-USA TODAY Sports /
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Milwaukee Bucks: MarJon Beauchamp, Memphis Grizzlies: Desmond Bane
Oct 10, 2023; Memphis, Tennessee, USA: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports /

Which role player will be the most important for the Bucks in 2023-24?

Sell: There are many good options here, but I’m not abandoning my stance on MarJon Beauchamp and how important he will be. I’ve said for quite some time that the Bucks need their own version of Tyrese Maxey, Tyler Herro, or 2022 Jordan Poole in the sense that they get a young player from the draft who can not only be a long-term piece but can also help the team win in the present day. Beauchamp has the opportunity to do that, as he could be the team’s next primary wing defender If he can capably guard opposing wings while showing confidence on offense – which has been hit or miss – then the guard could make a huge difference for this team. It was a significant win when the Bucks kept Beauchamp in the Lillard trade, and he’s got plenty of expectations in year two.

Moxon: I think one player we have all slightly forgotten about because his lack of time on the floor in the playoffs is Jae Crowder, and the fact the front office convinced him to stay around after that shows they have faith in him and so does Adrian Griffin. Off the bench his defense and shooting will be integral having lost Holiday. Some games we may even see him start at the 3 and Middleton plays the 2, depending on who the Bucks are facing. I think if Crowder has a good season and postseason then the Bucks have a real shot, if he isn’t seeing time on the court then that defensive presence will be clearly missing.

Luna: I have a strong feeling it’s going to be Malik Beasley. Three-point specialists have historically thrived in Milwaukee, and Bryn Forbes’ playoff series against Miami or Grayson Allen versus Chicago are more than enough proof. Even just the mere perception that Beasley cannot be left open in the corner will have an immeasurable effect on the spacing for the team’s other scorers to get to work. Whether he starts to space the floor for our stars or comes off the bench as a volume scoring spark plug, I think his presence will be a game changer in a multitude of scenarios for these Milwaukee Bucks.

Ridenour: Jae Crowder. Plain and simple, he’s now the defensive stopper alongside Giannis on this team, and he has to be that 3-and-D guy he was for the Phoenix Suns. If he can take on opposing teams’ best scorer, or at least number two option when Giannis covers the number one, they will still have Portis, Beasley and Lopez all there as strong defenders to plug up other holes. But, it all starts with Crowder and what he will bring.

Valind: MarJon Beauchamp will be the most important role player for the Bucks in 2023-24. I think the Bucks have bought into the notion that Beauchamp will take a tremendous leap in year two. The team will need him to take tough defensive matchups on most nights. In my opinion, though, Beauchamp is closer to becoming a quality two-way player than it seems. Once Beauchamp gains the confidence to be a nightly contributor offensively, he could be a great asset for the Bucks on both ends.

Moen: Cameron Payne. Milwaukee desperately needed a backup PG to fill out their roster. The team struggled to get consistent production from Jevon Carter and Goran Dragic last season. Payne is a dynamic scorer who can score in bunches, and offers instant offense off the bench.

Griffith: It’s hard to say at this point but I will say Jae Crowder. The Bucks lack defensive wings and if Crowder can step up on that end the Bucks will be sitting pretty. Jackson Jr. is another guy who could fill this role.

Schickert: Jae Crowder. A lot is being made of Coach Griffin saying Malik Beasley is going to get the toughest defensive assignments, but Jae Crowder’s defense could be even more important.