Australian-Free Bucks Lineups

So what lineups are the Bucks going to use now with Andrew Bogut out of commission?  Here’s a few of the lineups the Bucks have trotted out most frequently without Bogut this season.

UnitMinutesO-RatingD-RatingDifference
Ridnour-Stackhouse-Delfino-Ilyasova-Thomas 75.3399.33106.8-7.47
 Jennings-Bell-Delfino-Ilyasova-Gadzuric    47.93106.12102.064.06
Ridnour - Stackhouse - Salmons - Ilyasova - Thomas43.0393.8388.755.08
Ridnour - Jennings - Bell - Ilyasova - Thomas25.831349638
Jennings - Bell - Delfino - LRMAM - Ilyasova18.97117.592.525
Ridnour - Delfino - Salmons - Stackhouse - Ilyasova13.4112.51084.5

(A thanks to BasketballValue.com for the numbers, what a great site.)

A few notes:

  • Defensively, a Kurt Thomas and Ersan Ilyasova front court seems to be the Bucks best bet.  The lineup that combined the two of them with John Salmons, Jerry Stackhouse and Luke Ridnour had a defensive rating of 88.75, lowest among the seven I listed.
  • Combinations involving Brandon Jennings and Ridnour typically fare well – with or without Bogut.  At least offensively.  As I was writing yesterday, the Bucks create a lot of their offense from the wings in.  When Jennings or Ridnour are on a wing, they can really make use of their ball-handling and penetration skills. In over 25 minutes together when paired with Charlie Bell, Ilyasova and Thomas, their unit was plus 38.  Imagine if Salmons stepped in for Bell on those?  Looking at these numbers, I wouldn’t be surprised to see more lineups with those two again.  I suppose that would be “going small” again.
  • With a very small sample size of just 13 minutes, Ilyasova was not a disaster at center.  Playing with Stackhouse at the four (I think primarily against the Hawks) his lineup had a difference of plus 4.5 in terms of offense rating against defense rating.  Whether he could hold up against a larger front line (Boston’s perhaps) is still up in the air
  • Numbers don’t tell the story of Kurt Thomas’ foul problems so much.  When the Bucks last played the Heat without Bogut, Thomas played only 15 minutes due to foul trouble.  Thomas hasn’t had any restrictions on his fouls, but now that he’ll be playing more minutes, he’ll have to be more judicious.  We’ll see how this changes his game.
  • I don’t expect to see much Luc Richard Mbah a Moute at the three.  Playing him with Ilyasova and Thomas gives the Bucks a stout defensive unit, but leaves them with virtually no creativity offensively.  The only way I see that line-up having success offensively would be with Ridnour and Jennings in the back court.  That might be worth visiting.
  • A wild card in this is Darnell Jackson.  He hasn’t been used at all and won’t be available for the playoffs, but he’ll probably get some minutes coming down the stretch.  Whether or not he’ll take away minutes from the Dan Gadzuric and Brezec duo remains to be seen.
  • Speaking of the dynamic duo, where do they fit in the rest of the way?  Brezec hasn’t played enough with any group to have a real sample size, but we can be sure that he’s plodding and not very good.  Gadzuric has some hope, if only because he’s athletic and an okay rebounder.  The Jennings, Bell, Delfino, Ilyasova and Gadzuric unit has a good sample size of nearly a full game and has a positive differential.  If I had to guess, and it’s admittedly hard to predict coach Skiles, I’d say we see roughly 10 minutes a game from Gadzuric the rest of the way.

Jeremy Schmidt writes the Milwaukee Bucks blog Bucksketball. He founded it in…

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