Promising update on Milwaukee Bucks’ chances to re-sign Khris Middleton

Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton declined his $40 million player option, becoming one of the top NBA free agents this summer. While he will test the open market, Milwaukee reportedly has a strong shot at retaining him.

Middleton opted to test free agency despite coming off one of his worst seasons in recent years. He missed the first 20 games of the 2022-’23 campaign due to offseason surgery on his left wrist. Shortly after his return, right knee soreness sidelined him for another 18 consecutive games.

  • Khris Middleton stats (2022-’23): 15.1 PPG, 4.9 APG, 4.2 RPG, 43.6% FG, .117 WS/48

Related: Best second-round picks in NBA history, including Khris Middleton

When Middleton returned to the court, he wasn’t as effective. The 6-foot-7 forward shot 43.6 percent from the field, the lowest mark in his career, and shot under 32 percent from beyond the arc for the first time since his rookie season (2012-’13).

Turning 33 years old in August, Middleton s one of the best forwards available on the open market. While he’s expected to receive significant interest, a return to Milwaukee seems very possible.

During the 2023 NBA Draft, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski shared his belief that the Bucks have a very good chance to re-sign Middleton this summer.

“I think there’s still a very good opportunity for the Bucks and Middleton to get together on a new contract this offseason.”

Adrian Wojnarowski on the Milwaukee Bucks, Khris Middleton

The Bucks have committed themselves to win-now mode, wanting to keep Giannis Antetokounmpo happy and retaining their position as one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. With options limited on the trade market, re-signing Middleton is the best move Milwaukee could make this summer.

If Middleton returns, he’d enter the 2023-’24 season healthy and could benefit from the addition of head coach Adrian Griffin. With strong support from both the organization and locker room for his return, the expectation remains that Middleton stays in Milwaukee.

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