Let’s take a look at Brook Lopez’s offensive and defensive role with the Milwaukee Bucks and why the team shouldn’t trade him.
The Milwaukee Bucks are currently viewed as an organization with the Sword of Damocles hanging over its head as they enter the 2020 off-season. Giannis Antetokounmpo has realized that Milwaukee’s current roster isn’t good enough to win a championship as he enters the final year of his contract.
The realization led Antetokounmpo to request a meeting with ownership to discuss how the team planned to improve the roster. He was granted a meeting with Bucks co-owner/governor Marc Lasry on September 11th that covered their respective thoughts on how the season went and what Milwaukee can do to upgrade the roster.
During the meeting, Lasry promised the team would do everything it can to build a championship roster around Antetokounmpo, including going into the luxury tax. Shortly after the meeting, Antetokounmpo unfollowed all his current teammates on social media, leading to speculation that they were available in potential trade talks.
For example, Eric Nehm of The Athletic suggested earlier this week that the team trade Brook Lopez and the Bucks’ 2020 first-round pick to the Indiana Pacers for Myles Turner. Unfortunately, Milwaukee wouldn’t be solving their issues by trading Lopez. Lopez is already a good offensive complement to Antetokounmpo, and he is a vital member of the team’s defensive scheme.
Giannis Antetokounmpo’s strengths
Antetokounmpo rose to prominence when former head coach Jason Kidd decided to use him as a primary ball-handler in March of 2016. Kidd told beat writers that Antetokounmpo’s ability to find his teammates and put pressure on defenses made him ideal for the role.
Kidd’s decision has been the catalyst behind Antetokounmpo, averaging a career-high 84.4 touches per game over the past four-plus seasons, a 58.3 percent increase from his first two-plus seasons. The touches have enabled him to attack the basket 11.7 times per game, a 91.8 percent increase from his first two-plus seasons.
It resulted in 6.8 points and 1.2 assists, at least a 126 percent increase from his first two-plus seasons in both categories. More importantly, his statistics on drives equated to 29.7 percent of his points and 22.2 of his assists.