Patrick Beverley: Can He Save The Milwaukee Bucks' Season?
The Milwaukee Bucks face a defensive problem due to their blockbuster Damian Lillard trade, and the addition of Patrick Beverley falls short.
The Milwaukee Bucks faced a significant challenge as they approached the NBA Trade Deadline week. They were in desperate need of shoring up their perimeter defense, a glaring weakness resulting from their blockbuster Damian Lillard trade. While their offense ranked fourth in the league, their defense had plummeted to 19th in defensive rating.
The departure of key players like Jrue Holiday and Jevon Carter had left the Bucks vulnerable in terms of perimeter defense. Their starting backcourt of Lillard and Malik Beasley lacked the prowess needed to effectively defend against opposing teams. This deficiency was further compounded by their low opponent turnover percentage, leaving their rim protectors constantly scrambling to compensate for their teammates' mistakes.
The Bucks sought to address this issue by acquiring Patrick Beverley from the Philadelphia 76ers. Beverley, known for his defensive prowess, was expected to bolster the team's perimeter defense. However, concerns arose regarding his offensive performance, particularly his declining three-point shooting percentage.
While Beverley's defensive capabilities were still evident, his lateral quickness had diminished, and he was prone to over-aggressive play and fouls. Despite his veteran experience and physicality, he fell short of being the elite perimeter stopper the Bucks needed to elevate their championship aspirations.
Although the addition of Beverley improved the team, it did not fully address their need for a player who could seamlessly blend offense and defense. Without this crucial piece, the Bucks remained a dark horse in the title race, lacking the necessary ingredients to compete at the highest level in the NBA.