MILWAUKEE – The Milwaukee Bucks’ season kicks off today against the Philadelphia 76ers at 6:30 p.m. in Philly.
Bucks fans in the Milwaukee area will have to wait until Saturday to see the team at Fiserv when they go toe-to-toe with the Houston Rockets at 7 p.m.
Lat season, the Bucks were expected to make a big push defending their 2021 championship. However, injuries to key players like shooting guard Khris Middleton rattled those expectations. Middleton sprained his MCL in the game 2 of the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs against the Chicago Bulls and was ruled out for the entire series against the team that made it to finals, the Boston Celtics. Giannis put on an heroic performance averaging 34 points, 15 rebounds and 7 assists pushing the Bucks-Celtics series to 7 games. But it wasn’t enough. The Bucks walked out of TD Garden deflated after unsuccessfully defending their title.
But this is a new year and Antetokoumpo says watching the Golden State Warriors hoist up that Larry O’Brien trophy last season made him “jealous.”
“I kind of got jealous of Golden State and seeing them in the parade and the ESPYs,” Antetokounmpo said. “You know that feeling now. You know what is getting stripped away from you.”
With majority of the team returning from last year and new key additions like forward Joe Ingles, the Bucks are primed to make another run at the championship.
Middleton, Ingles and guard Pat Connaughton won’t be with the team to start the season as they’re both rehabbing injuries. Middleton is expected to be back early November. Ingles tore his ACL last season when he was with the Utah Jazz and could be back in January. Connaughton is expected to be sidelined for three weeks with a right calf strain.