Latest Sports Scores

Scoreboard

  • ALL
  • NBA
  • MLB
  • NHL
  • NBA
  • 4/27 12:00 AM EDT
    CLE0
    IND0
  • 4/27 7:00 PM EDT
    TOR0
    MIL0
  • 4/27 9:30 PM EDT
    SA0
    MEM0
  • 4/27 12:00 AM EDT
    HOU0
    OKC0
  • MLB
  • 4/27 1:05 PM EDT
    Mia
    Phi
  • 4/27 1:10 PM EDT
    Sea
    Det
  • 4/27 1:10 PM EDT
    Atl
    NYM
  • 4/27 1:45 PM EDT
    Tor0
    StL0
  • 4/27 3:10 PM EDT
    Was
    Col
  • 4/27 3:45 PM EDT
    LAD
    SF
  • 4/27 6:10 PM EDT
    Hou
    Cle
  • 4/27 7:10 PM EDT
    NYY
    Bos
  • 4/27 9:40 PM EDT
    SD
    Ari
  • 4/27 10:07 PM EDT
    Oak
    LAA
  • 4/27 1:45 PM EDT
    Tor
    StL
  • 4/27 7:15 PM EDT
    Tor
    StL
  • NHL
  • 4/27 7:00 PM EDT
    NYR0
    OTT0
  • 4/27 7:30 PM EDT
    PIT0
    WSH0

AOL.com's Preseason NBA Power Rankings: 13. Milwaukee Bucks

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon
Giannis Antetokounmpo: 'Thank God Jason Kidd Came to Our Team'


For basketball fans, the month of October is simply weeks of buildup to the long-awaited opener of the NBA season. To help make the days go by faster, we've been rolling out our NBA team previews and power rankings for all 30 squads.

Yesterday, we explained our choice for the Washington Wizards at No. 14. Up next on our list is one of 2014-15's most pleasant surprises, attempting to build even further on its ahead-of-schedule success.



2015 Milwaukee Bucks Media Day

The Milwaukee Bucks won 17 games in 2013-14. They then drafted Jabari Parker, plucked Jason Kidd from the Brooklyn Nets' bench onto theirs, signed a few veterans contracts and swung a few trades. Voila! One year later, the Bucks were playing playoff games.

They finished 41-41 in the East, good for the No. 6 seed and a hard fought playoff series against the Chicago Bulls. Thing is, they accomplished all that with Zaza Pachulia as their starting center, Jabari Parker out for the latter half of the season and swapping starting point guards in February.

This year, Milwaukee has a clear offensive focal point in Greg Monroe, who -- as poor a rep he got in Detroit for not fitting well alongside Andre Drummond -- is one of the more consistent young big men in the NBA. He's averaged better than 15 points per game in each of the last four seasons, shooting 50 percent while hauling down 9.7 rebounds per game. Having Monroe to dump the ball to at the end of a shot clock, when all else fails. Last year, they posted just a .399 effective field goal percentage in the final three second of the shot clock, according to 82games.com.

Returning is Khris Middleton, a breakout player last year who turned himself into a $70 million man. Middleton shot 40 percent from three-point range a year ago, providing incredible length and sturdy defending on the wing. Michael Carter-Williams will enter his first full season with Milwaukee, and under Kidd, the hope is that he can further hone his skills and cut down on turnovers. He committed 43 "bad pass" turnovers in just 25 games with the Bucks after his arrival.



The most important aspect of the Bucks, along with Jabari Parker's impending return, is Giannis Antetokounmpo, the athletic freak of nature who is still perfecting his role on the Bucks. According to Basketball-Reference, he spent significant time at four positions, a product of his extremely unique combination of size and skill. At 6'11" with a 7'3" wingspan, quickness and the ability to handle the ball, Antetokounmpo presents matchup issues presented by nobody else in the league. His weakness comes from beyond the arc, but after effectively eliminating that shot from his game for the last 15 contests of the regular season, he shot 49 percent and averaged nearly 15 points a night.

Giannis' progression will be key, and if he takes the necessary strides in Year 3 of his career -- combined with Jabari Parker picking up where he left off pre-injury -- there's reason to believe the Bucks can make some noise near the middle of the playoff picture.

More from AOL.com:
AOL.com's Preseason NBA Power Rankings: 14. Washington Wizards
AOL.com's Preseason NBA Power Rankings: 15. Utah Jazz
AOL.com's Preseason NBA Power Rankings: 16. Boston Celtics
Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners

Man Is Horrified To Learn His Biological Father's Identity - But A Look In The Mirror Man Is Horrified To Learn His Biological Father's Identity - But A Look In The Mirror
Nature Gets Revenge On Safari Hunter Who Killed Elephants And Lions For Sport Nature Gets Revenge On Safari Hunter Who Killed Elephants And Lions For Sport
12 Facts That Will Make You Smarter Than Your Friends 12 Facts That Will Make You Smarter Than Your Friends