The Milwaukee Bucks got swingman Khris Middleton back into the starting lineup just at the right time, plugging him right with the starters for good just in his seventh game coming back from a torn hamstring days before the start of the season.
Middleton also garnered a start against the Phoenix Suns in just his fourth game back from injury, totaling a record of 9-1 when he’s in the starting lineup.
The three-and-D shooting guard has not missed a beat since coming back to his rightful spot in the starting five, averaging 15.2 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.6 assists — providing the Bucks with the outside scoring they so badly needed from the wing.
Middleton had his best game of the season against the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday, dropping 30 points on 11-of-18 shooting from the floor and 8-of-9 from the free-throw line.
The Texas A&M product has been nothing but efficient since coming back from surgery, shooting a career-best 49.4 percent from the field as well as 42.9 percent from deep, as well as an icy 87 percent from the stripe.
His insertion in the lineup has been crucial as the Bucks have put themselves in seventh place in the Eastern Conference race, and are within a game’s reach of the sixth-seeded Indiana Pacers after the Detroit Pistons dropped three straight games.
If Milwaukee stays the course and makes the playoffs, it will face a challenge with the absence of forward Jabari Parker, but the team is much more likely to be able to draw a better first-round matchup with the help of a healthy sharp-shooting Khris Middleton.