Milwaukee Bucks All-Stars of All-Time
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Milwaukee Bucks Teams: 1968-2016
Kareem Abdul Jabbar formerly known as Lew Alcindor, Oscar Robertson, Bob Lanier, Marques Johnson, Sidney Moncrief, and Ray Allen are some of the greatest NBA players who have worn Milwaukee Bucks' uniforms. Since the team was formed in 1968, the Bucks have made the playoffs 27 times, won 13 division championships, and one NBA title. In this article, I will list my selections of all-time Bucks' all-stars who were the best in helping Milwaukee have great teams.
Kareem Abdul Jabbar with the Lakers in Late 80s
1971 Mlwaukee Bucks
Milwaukee Bucks Teams and All-Stars 1968-1974
With the exception of a few years in the 1970s, I have been following the Milwaukee Bucks since 1968. When the Bucks franchise was formed in 1968, I was overseas with the U.S. Navy. Most of my stateside sports news came by way of the Stars and Stripes newspaper for overseas military. In the winter of 1969 I recall looking at NBA box scores in the paper and noticing that my new hometown team was losing a lot of games. The losing would stop after the Bucks drafted Lew Alcindor with the first pick of the 1969 draft. Later, an NBA title would come to the Bucks in 1971 after they obtained Oscar Robertson in a trade with the Cincinnati Royals. Milwaukee was then truly a basketball powerhouse up until the mid 1970s.
"Gentleman" Jon McGlocklin, "The Greyhound", Bob Dandridge, Greg Smith, Lucius Allen, and Bob Boozer were all talented players who complimented Jabbar and Robertson during the 1970-1974 championship years. My all-time all-stars during this period would still have to be:
1. Kareem Abdul Jabbar:
Formerly known as Lew Alcindor out of UCLA, Jabbar was selected number one in the NBA draft of 1969. He won Rookie of the Year honors in the 1969-1970 season averaging 28.8 points per game (ppg) and 14.5 rebounds per game (rpg). Teaming with Oscar Robertson the following year, Kareem helped lead the Bucks to their only NBA title in 1971 with a regular season record of 66-16. In that season, he averaged 31.7 ppg. In the following three years, Jabbar led the Bucks to three more great seasons, culminating with a trip to the NBA Finals in 1974 and seventh game loss to the Boston Celtics. With his patented "skyhook" coined by Bucks radio announcer Eddie Doucette, Kareem was both an offensive and defensive force in the middle.
2. Oscar Robertson:
Oscar Robertson or the "Big O" played for the Bucks from 1970 until his retirement in 1974. Robertson was obtained by the Bucks prior to the 1970 season in a trade with the Cincinnati Royals Royals for Flynn Robinson and Charlie Paulk. While with the Royals, "Big O" was a perennial all-star who could do everything. As a point guard, he could shot, distribute the ball, and also go inside to rebound. Although Robertson was an aging player, he gave a young Bucks team veteran point guard leadership. Besides making Jabbar and his teammates better players, he averaged 19.4 ppg in the 1970-1071 season, leading Milwaukee to an NBA title. Robertson continued to play well with Kareem, and he led the Bucks to the playoffs three more times before retiring after the Bucks NBA finals loss to the Celtics in 1974.
Milwaukee Bucks All-Stars of All-Time
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Bucks Sweep Celtics in 1983 Playoffs
Milwaukee Bucks Teams and All-Stars: 1977- 1989
In 1975 after the end of the 1974-1975 season, Kareem Abdul Jabbar requested that the Bucks trade him to either the New York Knicks or the Los Angeles Lakers. A deal was eventually reached with the Lakers who sent four players to Milwaukee for Jabbar. The Jabbar-Robertson years were now in the past, and the Bucks were a rebuilding team. Coach Larry Costello resigned and was replaced by Don Nelson. During the mid and late 1970s the Bucks obtained Junior Bridgeman as one of the four players for Jabbar, and they drafted Marques Johnson and Sidney Moncrief with first round picks. After Bob Lanier was obtained following the 1979-1980 season in a trade with the Detroit Pistons, the Bucks had all of the pieces in place to be a winning team again. Although Milwaukee could never get by first the Philadelphia Sixers and then the Boston Celtics to win NBA titles, the Bucks still won their division every year and played above .500 during the 1980s. After Bob Lanier retired in 1984, Milwaukee plugged its hole in the middle by getting Jack Sikma from Seattle. Following the 1984-1985 season, the Bucks also tweaked their team by trading Marques Johnson and Junior Bridgeman to the San Diego Clippers for Terry Cummings.
Alex English, Craig Hodges, Harvey Catchings, Rickie Pierce, Paul Pressey, and Quinn Buckner were other talented players who played roles in the success of Milwaukee during the period 1977-1989. In looking at all of the Bucks during this period, these would have to be my all-time all-stars:
1. Bob Lanier:
In 1970 Lanier was an All-American number one pick out of St. Bonaventure by the Detroit Pistons. After 10 years of all-star play with the Pistons, the Bucks got Lanier in a trade in 1980. In his four seasons with Milwaukee, Lanier averaged 20.1 ppg and 10.1 rpg, with the Bucks winning division championships each year. In 1984 after the 1983-1984 season, Lanier retired.
2. Marques Johnson:
Marques Johnson played with the Bucks from 1977-1984. During that period, many people called him the best small forward in the game. He led the Bucks to division titles in 1980-1984 averaging 20.1 ppg during this four year period. Along with Sidney Moncrief, Johnson was part of the heart and soul of the Bucks.
3. Sidney Moncrief:
Sidney Moncrief played with Milwaukee from 1979-1990. As a great defensive point guard, Moncrief was undisputed leader of the Bucks during the 1980s. Although only averaging 15.6 ppg during his career, Sidney was a five time NBA All-Star, and he was chosen defensive player of the year for two straight years. The Milwaukee Bucks hired Sidney Moncrief as an assistant coach during the 2013-2014 season.
4. Terry Cummings:
Terry Cummings played with the Bucks from 1984-1989. As a power forward, he averaged 20 ppg and 8 rpg for four of the five years he was with the Bucks. Over his career, Cummings was a two time NBA All-Star, averaging 16.4 ppg and 7.3 rpg.
5. Junior Bridgeman:
Junior Bridgeman played with the Bucks from 1975-1984 and 1986-1987. In his 12 years with the Bucks, Bridgeman played in 711 games which is a Bucks record. He was a very valuable sixth man off the bench who averaged 13.6 ppg during his career.
Milwaukee Bucks Teams and All-Stars: 1990-2002
From 1990 until 1998 the Milwaukee Bucks had very poor season records because they were once again in a rebuilding mode. Most significant during this period were the first round selections of Glenn Robinson in 1994 and Ray Allen in 1996. By the time George Karl took over as coach in 1998, the Bucks finally started to get competitive again, especially after the trade for Sam Cassell in 1999. In just three years a struggling team now made the playoffs and just missed the NBA Finals in a seventh game loss to the Philadelphia Sixers. Although the Bucks went to the playoffs one more time in 2003, the team was now in disarray with the trading away of the "big three" of Robinson, Allen, and Cassell.
Tim Thomas, Michael Redd, Vin Baker, Jason Caffey, and Scott Williams were other good players with the Bucks during the late 1990s and early 2000s. My all-stars during this era would have to be:
1. Ray Allen:
Ray Allen played with the Bucks during the period 1996-2003 as a great shooting guard. He is best remembered as being a prolific three-point shooter and an extremely accurate free throw shooter. Allen was a first round pick out of Connecticut and averaged 20 ppg during his career with Milwaukee. Ray Allen then starred with the Boston Celtics leading them to a NBA championship.
2. Glen Robinson:
Glen Robinson or "Big Dog" played with the Bucks from 1994-2002. He is a two time NBA All-Star who averaged 20 ppg seven of the eight years that he played with Milwaukee. As a rookie out of Purdue, Robinson averaged 21.9 ppg during his first year.
3. Sam Cassell:
Sam Cassell played with the Bucks from 1999-2003. As a point guard and leader of the team, he was a member of the "Big 3" along with Ray Allen and Glen Robinson who helped Milwaukee get back to the playoffs. While with the Bucks, Cassell averaged 19 ppg and 8 assists per game (APG).
Milwaukee Bucks Teams: 2003-2016
It has been very frustrating following the Milwaukee Bucks during the period 2003-2016. Although the team made the playoffs in 2004, 2006, 2010, 2013, and 2015, there has been really no consistency and the team seems like it is rebuilding every year. Up until 2010 Michael Redd was a talented player on the team. There were some talented players on the team like Andrew Bogut and Brandon Jennings. The problem is that they have been very inconsistent in their careers, and they have not stepped up to be leaders like Oscar Robertson and Sidney Moncrief. For this reason, I can not include any players from 2003-2016 on my all-time all-star list.
Historically, the Milwaukee Bucks best players performed during the first twenty years of the team's existence. Hopefully, the present core of players like Giannis Antetokoumpo and Jabari Parker can mature, play more consistent basketball, and step up as leaders. If this is done, the Bucks should be much more competitive, and in the future I will have more Milwaukee Bucks all-stars to add to my list.
© 2011 Paul Richard Kuehn
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