The Milwaukee Bucks did a great deal of work this offseason to retain their core of key players. Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez, and Jae Crowder were all re-signed in hopes that they can help the Bucks return to the NBA Finals. However, Joe Ingles and Jevon Carter departed in free agency, leaving some roles that need to be filled.
Milwaukee replaced Ingles’ and Carter’s three point shooting by signing Malik Beasley, who led the NBA in three pointers made off the bench in 2022-23. However, they did not sign a backup point guard, and based on recent comments from general manager Jon Horst, it does not sound like they are going to.
Jon Horst Does Not Plan on the Milwaukee Bucks Signing a Backup Point Guard
In a recent interview with Eric Nehm of The Athletic, Horst was asked about the backup point guard position. While he would not guarantee that Milwaukee will not sign someone else yet this offseason, he did state that the team is comfortable moving forward without a backup to Jrue Holiday:
“We’re at peace with where we’re at right now. We’ll see. You never know how it works out and we’ll have avenues to change, if we need to change. But we have a lot of secondary ballhandlers.
“Even though there’s not, by position, a true, pure backup point guard on the 15-man roster, we have Lindell (Wigginton) and Omari (Moore) on our 2-ways right now and we feel great about those guys.
“Lindell, in particular, has been there and done that for us, so he’s going to have an opportunity. Omari is kind of a little bit of a secret for us that we’re excited about. He’s really smart with the ball, very poised, can make shots, has great size, so we feel good about that. But also think of Malik Beasley and think of Grayson Allen and obviously Giannis and obviously Khris and Andre, all of whom can handle and make plays.
“So, I think Griff’s excited for that challenge to figure out how we utilize it and we’ve ultimately made a talent bet on where we wanted to put our money and our minutes and felt like we could cover that position with the roster we have. If that doesn’t work, we’ll figure it out.”
As Horst notes, the Bucks can use other ballhandlers, other than a point guard, to help facilitate the offense when Holiday is resting on the bench. He also notes the future of the position is bright with Lindell Wigginton and Omari Moore on two-way contracts.
Current Milwaukee Bucks Players Who Can Act as Facilitator
Of the players on their current roster, perhaps the mentioning of Grayson Allen as a potential ballhandler is the most puzzling. Allen is a great three-point shooter, but has not been known as a facilitator at any point in his basketball career.
Middleton and Giannis each have experience as a point forward, if you will, and both have averaged over five assists per game rather consistently. That being said, the mentioning of Andre Jackson Jr., who Milwaukee drafted with the 36th overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, is intriguing.
Jackson has drawn quite a bit of attention to himself during the NBA Summer League thanks to his defense and passing. If the former National Champion from UConn can be that kind of passer and defender against top competition in the NBA, then Milwaukee indeed has nothing to worry about.
It is important to note, though, that Horst did admit that there is a possibility that going into the season without a true backup point guard may not work. If that is the case, he says they will figure something out during the season. This could mean that a trade could possibly occur, which may be difficult considering the lack of tradable assets on the roster.
In any case, Horst is the general manager who built the Bucks’ 2021 Championship roster. He has a history of success and, therefore, has earned the benefit of the doubt.