Why you should be rooting for Malcolm Brogdon.
By: Jim Boyce
The second round of the NBA draft can at best be described as a shot in the dark, and at worst described as pointless. Very few second round players ever become stars or even starters. For every Draymond Green, Isaiah Thomas, or our own Khris Middleton, there are dozens of Johnny O’Bryant’s.
That being said the Bucks may have found themselves a real value in this years second round with the selection of Malcolm Brogdon out of Virginia. After shocking the world with the selection of very talented but very risky Thon Maker in the first, John Hammond and Co. seemed to go a safer route in the second. Here are a couple reasons to like Malcolm Brogdon.
He Can Help the Team Right Away
Malcolm Brogdon’s game is not flashy, he is not likely to be joining Giannis and Jabari on SportsCenters Top 10 countdowns any time soon. What Brogdon does do though is play defense, something the Bucks mostly neglected last season. Brogdon was the NABC Defensive Player of the Year in 2016 and was often asked to guard all three perimeter positions. While lacking elite lateral quickness that worried some scouts, the effort and determination he shows on a nightly basis should help him to limit opposing wing players. In some ways that description reminds me of another recent Bucks addition and gritty defender, Matthew Dellevadova.
Brogdon probably won’t put up big numbers on the offensive end, but he often looked like the most poised player on the floor during the Summer League. He should be an unselfish teammate who is capable of hitting the open jumper when the opportunity presents itself.
His Intangibles Are Off The Charts
Look as hard as you can, but you will not find anyone that has had anything negative to say about Brogdon as a teammate or person. He was a leader for a good Virginia team, and despite being a rookie, can become the same on the Bucks. In a recent piece by Dave Johnson of the Daily Press highlighting his leadership skills, Brogdon sounded like a player comfortable with that role who also understands his place as a rookie making the leap to the next level.
“I’m excited,” Brogdon said in meeting the Milwaukee media. “I’m ready to take on whatever role Coach Kidd and Mr. Hammond have in mind for me. I think at heart, I’m a leader. But in this situation, I’ll have to listen and learn even from the younger guys here. I’m going to feel my way out.”
Outside of basketball Brogdon is a very impressive young man. Watch the 3:00-4:18 mark here where Brogdon talks about the importance of his education and goals of using the money he will make from his NBA career to help those in need. I know what you might be thinking, character is not going to win basketball games, and that is true. The reality is we as sports fans generally don’t care what players do with their free time as long as they perform on the court.
However I think Brogdon’s goals of contributing to the world outside of sports is impressive when he could easily live comfortably off the money he will make as a pro. It’s safe to say Brogdon would be a successful individual even without basketball. He is a genuinely likable person and because of that it is almost impossible not to cheer for Malcolm Brogdon as he begins his NBA career.
In closing, there are a lot of things to like about Brogdon both on and off the court. While the odds are he will never be a star player. His effort and basketball IQ should allow him to become a solid rotation player on a Milwaukee team that was lacking off the bench last season. Do not be surprised if Malcolm Brogdon carves out a role and plays meaningful minutes off the bench as early as his rookie season.