The 2023-24 NBA season has officially kicked off, and while nothing is penciled in yet, it seems like the Milwaukee Bucks have their starting lineup set.
The backcourt will (likely) consist of two newcomers, Damian Lillard and Malik Beasley. Lillard was obviously going to start upon arrival, but Beasley was more of a question mark. His strong play in the preseason could have very well earned him the job. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, and Brook Lopez shouldn’t be too surprising to round out the starting five.
This lineup is certainly interesting, so let’s look up three strengths the group possesses.
1 – Star power
Right away, this lineup is star-studded. Four of the five players, with Malik Beasley being the only one left out, were all featured on The Ringer’s recent ranking of the top 100 players in the league, which included two players in the top 14. The Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers were the only other two teams to have two players featured within that range. That’s quite a feat.
It starts with Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard, who could potentially be the league’s best duo this coming season. These are two of the best in the business at their jobs and are both listed among the top 75 NBA players ever. Lillard is the best player Giannis has ever played with, and vice versa. These are two bonafide superstars on the same team.
While those two do the heavy lifting in terms of star power, Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez are both more than respectable players. Middleton is a three-time All-Star, and though he is coming off an injury-riddled year, he’s got what it takes to make a big impact. Lopez just had an excellent year, having finished second in the Defensive Player of the Year running.
Even if Beasley is the weak link – and he’s still a very nice player – there is no denying that this is still one of the best starting units in the association. If they can establish the proper chemistry, this group could be outright formidable due to their talent across the board.