Why drafting Zach Edey would be a major mistake for the Milwaukee Bucks

Wisconsin v Purdue
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In their latest 2024 NBA Mock Draft, The Ringer has the Milwaukee Bucks selecting Zach Edey with the 25th overall pick. I believe this would be a mistake for the Bucks to use their first round pick on a player with limited upside at an important position.

Article author Kevin O'Connor sites Brook Lopez's age and the fact that his contract expires after the 2024-25 season as reasons to select a new big man.

While having a big man is useful in today's NBA, especially for defensive and rebounding purposes, two areas that Zach Edey can help in on the surface, I have strong concerns about what it would look like in practice to see Edey in a Bucks uniform.

Zach Edey would be a mistake for the Milwaukee Bucks: Defense

While Edey is averaging a career high 2.2 blocks per game this season, it is at the college level where the floor spacing is nowhere near what it is in the NBA. In the Big 10 (14 teams), there are only three teams who shoot above 36 percent from the 3-point line on average, and one of them is Edey's Purdue Boilermakers. In the NBA, there are 19 teams that shoot 36 percent or higher as a team.

For Edey to be a worthwhile selection, he would have to be at least serviceable at defending away from the basket. While the Milwaukee Bucks do currently operate a drop defense with Brook Lopez, there is a lot to be said for how Lopez defends in this way and the hope would have to be that Edey could learn that from Lopez in the one year before his contract is up.

O'Connor acknowledges himself in his report on Edey that he is a "limited defender when pulled away from the basket. He struggles to recover on pick-and-pops and often gets blown by on closeouts."

This is a major red flag being in the Eastern Conference that possesses players like Joel Embiid, who would feast on Edey away from the basket or dribbling towards it, or a player like Kristaps Porzingis, who has size and athleticism that Edey could not compete with. Even Bam Adebayo, who isn't a big 3-point shooter but has a very reliable mid-range jumper, could give him trouble. Not to mention Julius Randle and Myles Turner, who can both stretch the floor as big men.