The Milwaukee Bucks finished the 2012-13 NBA season in third place in the Central Division, good enough for the no. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. However, with a 38-44 regular-season record, it was unlikely that they’d challenge the conference frontrunner Miami Heat in the first round of the playoffs.
The Heat swept the Bucks 4-0, winning each game by an average of 14.75 points.
In the offseason, Bucks GM John Hammond sent his starting backcourt of Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis packing, choosing to replace them with guards like Luke Ridnour and Brandon Knight in an attempt to have his team play a more “pass first” style.
This change in philosophy won’t necessarily sell Milwaukee Bucks tickets on its own merits, since the team will have to prove it’s more than a middle-of-the-pack Eastern Conference squad. It will then be up to the fans to see if Bucks tickets are a worthwhile purchase.
The 2013-14 Bucks are a completely overhauled team, as only John Henson, Ersan Ilyasova, Larry Sanders and Ekpe Udoh return from last year’s lineup. Perhaps an infusion of new names into the lineup will be enough for Milwaukee to rise in the standings.
Last year’s team finished third in the Central Division, well above the Detroit Pistons and Cleveland Cavaliers. But, the Bucks will need to remain aware of the Pistons and Cavs this season if they want to hold onto that spot in the division.
BMO Harris Bradley Center seats 18,717 for Bucks games and will again play host to the team in 2013-14. Milwaukee averaged just 15,035 Bucks tickets sold per home game last season, which ranked them no. 27 in league attendance. This season, a new-look roster might help to bring more fans out to the games.
In a league where parity is a major factor, the Bucks have attempted to redesign their roster with the hopes of climbing the standings, much like other NBA squads. It’s a sound practice, but the key will be how much of an impact new players like Carlos Delfino and O.J. Mayo will have. The only question in Milwaukee is: will a rebuild strategy work?