Despite the benefit of an extended break that he and his Bucks’ teammates will now enjoy while awaiting the winner of the Raptors/Sixers series, shooting guard Malcolm Brodgon appears likely to continue coming off the bench for the time being, writes Matt Velazquez of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Brogdon, who sat out for nearly two months with a torn plantar fascia in his right foot, made his return in Wednesday’s Game 5 win over the Celtics and performed well off the bench, scoring 10 points, dishing out four assists, and grabbing three rebounds in limited minutes.
In addition to Brogdon’s injury, absence, and resulting rust, the potential decision to keep him out of the staring lineup is also a result of the improved performance of a recently-inserted starter who played extremely well against Boston – forward Nikola Mirotic.
Per Velazquez, Budenholzer has been impressed (and perhaps pleasantly surprised) by Mirotic’s activity on defense, particularly the way he has been able to play with both Brook Lopez and Giannis Antetokounmpo and therefore defend smaller wings like Jayson Tatum, Marcus Morris, or Gordon Hayward. As for whether the Bucks’ regular reserves prefer to play with Brogdon or Mirotic, they don’t seem to care.
“Whatever coach wants to do we’ll support,” reserve guard Pat Connaughton said. “If we have to re-knight Niko back into it we’ll re-knight him. If Malcolm’s still with us, we’re happy to have him. Regardless of who is a part of the bench mob, the bench mob’s goals and morals still stay the same.”