The Milwaukee Bucks are officially back as of tonight.
The news today has been a little shaky, with a report coming out that the new arena’s go live date has been pushed back a year. But before you panic, that push back doesn’t change the overall outlook. Milwaukee’s not losing its basketball team.
The NBA had threatened to move the team if a new arena wasn’t built by 2017. An NBA spokesman said Tuesday that the league is “comfortable with the revised timetable.”
But no one is excited to talk about the arena tonight. Everyone’s excited because finally, after months of speculation and movement, we can watch the Bucks play basketball again. I’ve recorded numerous preview podcasts in the past few weeks, so that’d be a great way for you to get even more excited about tonight’s game.
Dunc’d On: I spoke with Nate Duncan and we went technically deep on Milwaukee’s strengths and weaknesses as a basketball team. We discussed the new additions and how we expected everything to work out for the Bucks.
Milwaukee Magazine: I spoke with Dan Shafer, Howie Magner and Eric Nehm about the state of the Milwaukee Bucks. This one was a lot of fun and a little less basketball technical. Howie and I had a great debate about the inner workings of Milwaukee’s front office that makes it worth the listen all by itself.
Milwaukee Record: There was more tomfoolery here, as Tyler Mass, Dan Shafer and I talked about 90s rap groups that could be a good fit for the Bucks this season, in addition to all the typical Bucks preview stuff.
As for tonight’s game …
What to Watch For: Bucks
Not Giannis, he’s suspended. Not O.J. Mayo, he’s hurt. But Greg Monroe will make his Bucks debut, which makes this game worth the price of admission all by itself. Optimists are excited about Monroe’s skill as a post-up scoring threat, while cynics are worried about his less than stellar reputation as a defender. Can he help Milwaukee turn into a better offensive team without cratering them defensively? That’s one of the big questions heading into this season and will be a theme every night.
This will be Milwaukee’s first regular season opener at home since the 80s, so it’ll definitely be a very festive night. There will probably be fire and a promo video that makes you want to run through a wall. I’m sure some Bucks Celebs will be on hand and it’ll be a big party.
What to Watch For: Knicks
Are they still unspeakably bad? That’d be the first thing to take note of. If the Bucks end the first quarter up double digits and Carmelo starts sulking around the court by half, we could be in for another year of the Knicks being horrible. But there are some legitimate reasons to watch the Knicks, with Carmelo only being one.
Kristaps Porzingis is more than just a fun name. He’s the 20-year-old, 7-foot-3 foreign mystery that the Knicks are pinning their future on. He’s going to be involved from day one in a role that’s likely going to be much more prominent than the one Giannis was in as a rookie.