Bench Strength No. 4: Having A True Backup Point Guard
I want to revisit Cameron Payne because his impact and importance is even deeper than some other bench members on the Milwaukee Bucks.
For most of the off-season, many were wondering who the Bucks would target for their backup point guard position, which was left open for much of the summer. After Jevon Carter left the team the importance of that position getting filled amplified, and they ultimately landed Payne, who has proven himself as a legitimate backup guard in the NBA. He’s averaged 10-plus points per game in three of the last four years and has quickly ascended through the ranks of some of the better backup points guards. Not only can he provide a scoring boost, but having a reliable ball handler to give Damian Lillard a break from running the offense can be valuable in a deep playoff run.
Outside of the playoff experience that Payne brings, he’s also played behind incredible guards all throughout his career. Having that knowledge shared with him gives him an added veteran feel, which, in a way, can help bring some of the young guards up to speed on the NBA.
Payne’s basketball IQ is off the charts, and having someone who can take care of the ball and limit turnovers will also be beneficial for this Milwaukee Bucks team. Having the backup point guard position filled, it gives reassurance to this roster that they have someone that can step in and run the offense when Lillard needs a break. Even though he won’t give you 20-plus points a game, he can still be an efficient 10 to 12 points a game and a great ball handler to orchestrate the offense.
This is one of the better benches in the NBA, and if they can keep everyone healthy, they can do a lot of damage to opposing teams. With a wide variety of versatility from a number of players and a good group of veterans who can teach the younger group of players, this reserve group will have a great impact this year.
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