Budenholzer trying to solve Bucks puzzle of too many guards and not enoughrotation spots
公鹿教練Budenholzer的難題: 後衛太多 空缺太少
By Matt Velazquez
The Milwaukee Bucks have a guard problem. With the addition of George Hilllast week, they now have a surplus of talented guards who can contribute andreasonably fit into the regular rotation.
Among the players who usually come off the bench, coach Mike Budenholzer hasHill, Sterling Brown, Pat Connaughton, Donte DiVincenzo and Tony Snell. Thatdoesn't even take into consideration starters Eric Bledsoe and MalcolmBrogdon.
從那群要從板凳出發的後衛球員裡，教練Mike Budenholzer有Hill，Sterling Brown，Pat Connaughton，Donte Divincenzo跟Tony Snell可以用，那還不包括先發的EricBledsoe跟Malcolm Brogdon。
Yes, guard depth is among the good problems to have in the NBA. Havingnumerous players who can reliably handle the ball, create for others, shootfrom long distance and defend along the perimeter — preferably againstmultiple positions — is certainly a luxury.
But even good problems demand solutions.
“A lot of late nights," Budenholzer said. "It is a good problem. All of themhave played, all of them have helped us. It’s part of, I guess, one of theharder parts about coaching is you have to make some tough decisions.
"It’s probably better to maybe go with whoever you’ve got, at least goinginto the game, and give them good opportunities to play and have an impact onthe game. If you need to change, then you do.
Budenholzer's typical solution has been to decide on a 10-man rotation forthe night and stick to it. Usually, that's left at least one of theaforementioned players as the odd man out, especially considering Hill —replacing Matthew Dellavedova who was rarely part of the rotation — hasplayed in three straight games heading into Monday's 6 p.m. clash with theDetroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena.Budenholzer
DiVincenzo, who was a regular contributor over Milwaukee's first 14 gamesbefore a left quadriceps strain, has sat out three of the past five gameswhile getting opportunities in each of the two matchups last week against theCleveland Cavaliers. Connaughton was inactive last Monday against theCavaliers after tweaking his left knee two games prior, didn't play Wednesdayagainst Indiana Pacers even after being activated, then was slotted into thestarting lineup Friday due to an injury to Brogdon.DiVincenzo
“It’s just something that’s a learning process," Connaughton said. "We’rea very good team; we’ve got a lot of depth. There are guys that can step upand play whenever their number is called.
"The biggest thing for us is to make sure we trust what Coach Bud’s doingand I think he’s done a good job of it. I think he’s been great withcommunicating with guys on it.”
Brown, in the midst of a strong six-game stretch in which he averaged 7.7points and 4.8 rebounds over 22.7 minutes per contest, was the most recentguard to have his turn on the bench Friday in Cleveland. In his stead,Budenholzer opted to give Jaylen Morris, one of Milwaukee's two-way players,his first meaningful minutes of the season.
“It’s great; it’s going to be needed later on in the season and theplayoffs," said Brown of the guard depth, noting his absence Friday wassimply a coach's decision. "We got guys that coach trusts and we trust eachother. … Just got to stay ready.”
All the lineup shuffling, including adjustments due to minor injuries tostarters, has meant for some new and interesting lineup combinations. Thereare players like Hill and Morris who are adjusting to playing alongside newteammates. Brown, DiVincenzo and Connaughton have had to be ready to fluidlymove between groups consisting of mostly starters or mostly reserves.
In general, Milwaukee's guards off the bench have been positive contributorsover the past week. With the exception of Snell — who has appeared in everygame this season — the other five guards all had positive plus-minusaverages over the past four games dating back to last Sunday's win over theToronto Raptors, meaning the Bucks typically scored more points than theiropponents while those individuals were on the court.
Those numbers may not help Budenholzer solve the puzzle of which guards tolean on most, but they do bode well for the Bucks.
“We give a lot of different looks, but I think a ton of what we’ve beendoing is working," Bucks center Brook Lopez said. "It’s great to be able tohave that trust and faith in each player down the bench that guys are goingto come in and there’s not going to be any drop-off.”