How the Milwaukee Bucks should fill their open roster spots this off-season

2022 NBA Draft
2022 NBA Draft / Arturo Holmes/GettyImages

The Milwaukee Bucks have five open roster spots with 10 guaranteed contracts heading into the 2024 NBA off-season. Let's look closer at these spots and what the team could do with them.

Analyzing the Milwaukee Bucks roster heading into off-season

Which players fit the five open roster spots?

Currently, the Milwaukee Bucks have two draft picks in the upcoming 2024 draft - 23rd and the 33rd overall. There are also five unrestricted free agents - Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Jae Crowder, Danilo Gallinari and Thanasis Antetokounmpo. The Bucks also have three two-way roster spots available that were filled last season by TyTy Washington, Ryan Rollins and Jaylin Galloway.

Who stays? Who walks? Will there be trades?

The Bucks currently have only four young players on their roster. Since head coach Doc Rivers and general manager Jon Horst prefer to have a roster with veterans who mainly play, it is fair to say that either Chris Livingston or MarJon Beauchamp could very well be traded, along with one of their draft picks, for a proven and much-needed defensive wing player to play at the two spot or perhaps a young, athletic center.

Out of all the Bucks' unrestricted free agents, the only one they should consider re-signing is Patrick Beverley. He has a connection to Doc Rivers, having played for him in the past. There's no need to re-sign Gallinari, as he's as good as gone. The same goes for Crowder. His departure will hopefully be mutual.

Both Crowder and Gallinari's age, lack of speed and lateral movement is glaring. Beasley is most likely gone as well, as another team will overpay him more than the minimum, which the Bucks cannot afford. A.J. Green will most likely slide into the starting two guard spot with Beasley's departure.

What happens with Andre Jackson Jr. and MarJon Beauchamp?

Andre Jackson Jr. should have a much bigger role next season and hopefully will be a regular in the rotation. His energy, spark and defensive prowess is evident from the moment he steps on the court. He has more than proved his worth as a rookie and should have a much bigger role in his second season.

As for Beauchamp, he is the major wild card on next season's roster. Doc Rivers alluded to the fact that he really didn't get a good look at him since he became the head coach as he was injured during their limited practice sessions, although he might have the most potential of all the younger players. His trade value isn't exactly ascending right now, so unless he's packaged in a trade with a draft pick and they get an automatic rotational player in return, the Bucks might not receive much for him.

Draft picks dilemma

As mentioned above, the Milwaukee Bucks have two draft picks in the upcoming 2024 draft. It is highly unlikely that the Bucks will use both picks to draft two different players. By trading the 33rd overall pick for two future second round picks, this would help the Bucks try and recoup the five second round draft picks from the disastrous Jae Crowder trade in February of 2023.

Should the Bucks decide to keep one or both draft picks, two potential targets should be Dayton forward DaRon Holmes II and Indiana center Kel'el Ware. The Bucks are in dire need of youth and athleticism up and down the roster, and a backup center such as Ware and/or power forward such as Holmes would most definitely fill the need for a young big man.

Drafting either one of these guys would be a score, although knowing Jon Horst, he doesn't appear as though he would want to go into a new season with a reserve rotation mostly consisting of young players, as we know how much he values established veterans, especially aged 35 and up.

Draft picks and realistic free agent signings

If the Bucks keep both draft picks and draft two athletic bigs, they then need to focus on the free agent market. Kevin Porter Jr. would be an excellet addition to the roster in terms of his youth and athleticism. If the Bucks can sign him for the minimum, they must explore this option.

If Malik Beasley signs elsewhere, which appears likely, there other free agent options the Bucks should explore signing, specifically ball handling point guards. Players that stand out who are also solid defensively are Lonnie Walker IV, Dennis Smith Jr., Kris Dunn and perhaps Kendrick Nunn. Any of these guys would be a huge improvement as backup point guard.

Shooting guard Kelly Oubre Jr. would be a dream scenario signing, but he will command big money, which Bucks might not be able to afford. Draft night is just around the corner, and it will be interesting to see what unfolds for the Milwaukee Bucks, in terms of filling out and completing the remaining roster spots for next season.