Donte DiVincenzo has shown improvements in each of his three seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks. Every year, there appears to be areas of growth in his game, especially in the offensive part of his game. The Bucks guard has become a fan favorite for his tenacity on defense. However, things with DiVincenzo have not always been exactly how the Bucks had planned. This leads us to the question, could Donte DiVincenzo be traded during the 2021-2022 season?
Assuming that DiVincenzo will not be available when the Bucks open the season, the team made a trade with the Memphis Grizzlies to acquire Grayson Allen this offseason. Allen is a very similar player to DiVincenzo on both sides of the ball, which is why the trade makes perfect sense for Milwaukee. He is a quality three-point shooter on offense and an excellent defender on the defensive side of things, as is DiVincenzo. Trying to get both Allen and DiVincenzo the minutes that players of their quality deserve may be a difficult task for Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer when DiVincenzo returns from his injury during the season.
Donte DiVincenzo’s Injury History
As has already been mentioned, DiVincenzo has struggled to stay on the court throughout his Bucks career. He missed most of his rookie season due to a lingering foot injury. He again suffered a foot injury last season, this time a torn ligament in his ankle. Both foot injuries have caused DiVincenzo to miss significant time in the playoffs. During his rookie season, he missed the Bucks’ entire playoff run, where they lost in the Eastern Conference Finals. During last season’s NBA Championship run, DiVincenzo missed all but three of the team’s playoff games. The Bucks may need to move on from DiVincenzo if he’s not a reliable option to be available when he’s needed.
The Emergence of Pat Connaughton
One of the heroes of Milwaukee’s championship run was Pat Connaughton. Many fans were critical of Connaughton prior to last season’s playoff run. He was able to be the next man up after DiVincenzo suffered his injury. In place of the injured DiVincenzo, Connaughton was an unsung hero off of the Bucks bench. He had a great series against the Suns in the NBA Finals, shooting 44% from 3. Connaughton’s emergence as a legitimate bench option may leave no room for DiVincenzo on the roster when he returns.
Considering the fact that Donte DiVincenzo is my personal favorite Bucks player, I will try to give my unbiased opinion here. Bucks general manager Jon Horst may have some trade discussions around DiVincenzo if he can show that he still has trade value when he comes back. With Allen possibly taking the starting role and the rise of Connaughton in last year’s playoffs, DiVincenzo may not have a fit on this season’s Bucks roster upon return from injury. As much as it pains me to say it, the best move might be to trade DiVincenzo and go along with Allen and Connaughton in the guard spots.