The Bucks are used to having scoring point guards. Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis took turns at the point last year and Jennings had the rock in his hand for the most part the couple seasons before that. Neither are particularly known for their playmaking and assists.
Ellis signed with the Mavericks. Jennings took a sign and trade deal to the Pistons which helped the Bucks acquire Brandon Knight.
So here comes another point guard who is not a true distributor and looks to lead the Bucks to the Playoffs. And Knight truly wants to be that kind of a point guard now. With O.J. Mayo, Ersan Ilyasova and Larry Sanders around him, Knight could very well have the supporting cast necessary to make that jump and become the player he wants to be, as he tells Gery Woelfel of The Racine Journal Times:
I’m not trying to blame anybody. But the team we had … It was a tough situation.
When you have shooters, it’s easy to get assists because they’re going to knock down open shots. We had, maybe, one (Kyle Singler) knock-down shooter. And I didn’t have any bigs who could stop and pop. The only one we had was Charlie Villanueva and he didn’t play much. And, when he did play, he was with the second unit so I wasn’t playing much with him.
It is truly a brand new day for Knight.
He has career averages of 13.1 points per game and 3.9 assists per game. Knight was never quite the dynamic scorer nor the young, developing point guard the Pistons hoped for after they drafted him. It did not help that, as Knight said, he came to the team while Detroit was transitioning and trying to put together a young core. There were not many weapons to protect him.
Milwaukee may not be that team either. It is a fresh start though with some quality players.
The Bucks did make the Playoffs last year and found potentially replacements for the players they lost. It is yet to be seen whether O.J. Mayo is better than Monta Ellis or Brandon Knight is better than Brandon Jennings.
What might end up happening though is Knight just may not be a NBA point guard.
The Bucks could still use Luke Ridnour as a point guard or perhaps Giannis Antetokounmpo as a point forward in a lineup with Knight and Mayo on it. There are possibilities for Larry Drew to explore.
Now on his second team though, and with his rookie contract running out, Knight still has to show he can be a point guard in this league or something more than a role player. Milwaukee will be the place he tries to do that. It is an opportunity he cannot pass up.