Three veterans involved in Tuesday’s Bucks/Nets contest have been cleared to play for the first time this summer, the two teams confirmed this morning.
Eric Bledsoe and Pat Connaughton will be available for Milwaukee, according to head coach Mike Budenholzer, who added that both players will see “reasonably low” minutes, per ESPN’s Malika Andrews (Twitter link). Meanwhile, Jamal Crawford is set to make his debut for Brooklyn, tweets Andrews.
Bledsoe and Connaughton both arrived late to Orlando this summer after contracting COVID-19. As we noted when they were ruled out for Milwaukee’s opener against Boston last Friday, there was no need for the the club to rush either player back, since the Bucks have essentially locked up the East’s No. 1 seed and just need to get their key guys up to speed for the start of the postseason.
As for Crawford, he signed with the Nets as a substitute player last month, but it took the 40-year-old a little extra time to get back into game shape. Having cleared him for Tuesday’s game, Brooklyn is apparently confident in Crawford’s conditioning level.
The veteran guard may be leaned on to play rotation minutes immediately, since the shorthanded Nets will be without Caris LeVert, Joe Harris, and Jarrett Allen today. Head coach Jacque Vaughn said Crawford will come off the bench and figures to play in “short stints” (Twitter link via Andrews).