The road to repeating as champions may have just gotten a lot harder for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Bucks star Khris Middleton left with injury in the fourth quarter of Game 2 against the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday and did not return. Middleton had hurt his left knee when he slipped while attempting a spin move.
After the game, which the Bucks lost 114-110, Middleton was diagnosed with a sprained MCL. Dario Melendez of WISN12 News in Milwaukee shared some further bad news about Middleton on Thursday, reporting that he may be out three to four weeks with the injury.
If that timetable holds true for Middleton, it is very bad news for the Bucks. Middleton, the three-time All-Star, is enormously important on both ends for Milwaukee. Even in just this first-round series against Chicago alone, which it sounds like Middleton could miss the remainder of, the Bucks are now facing an uphill climb, having just lost their home-court advantage.
Milwaukee head coach Mike Budenholzer has already had to get creative this series. But finding a way to plug the Middleton-sized hole in his lineup (perhaps with some combination of Pat Connaughton, Grayson Allen and others) may be Budenholzer’s toughest task yet.