How the NBA Suspension Has Affected the Central Division

Central Division
Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo runs with the ball during the NBA basketball match between Milwaukee Bucks and Charlotte Hornets at The AccorHotels Arena in Paris on January 24, 2020. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP) (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)

Every team that will participate in the NBA’s resumption of play has been impacted by the season’s suspension. Today, we take a closer look at the teams in the Central Division.

The Central Division will be the least-represented division in the entire NBA when play resumes in Orlando in late July. Only two of the five teams in the Central will get the chance to continue their respective seasons.

How the Central Division has been Affected by the NBA Suspension

Milwaukee Bucks

The pause has definitely helped the Milwaukee Bucks as it has allowed Giannis Antetokounmpo to fully recover from the joint capsule sprain he suffered just before the season was suspended. At the beginning of the year, the Bucks were on pace to flirt with 70 wins. However, the team slowed down a bit during the month before the shutdown. Milwaukee was on a three-game losing streak and might’ve been in danger of surrendering the top seed to the Lakers. However, the Orlando bubble will nullify any semblance of home-court advantage.

Having a few months off has no doubt allowed the team to head to Orlando rejuvenated and motivated. On the other hand, the Bucks will certainly hope that the time off hasn’t cooled off Khris Middleton. The 28-year-old guard was having an all-time great shooting season and could join the exclusive 50-40-90 club once play resumes.

Indiana Pacers

The Indiana Pacers are definitely a team to watch out for going into the playoffs due to the potential reemergence of Victor Oladipo. The two-time All-star has played in less than 50 games since the 2017-18 season because of a significant knee injury. The time off could help Oladipo become more comfortable with his knee. It may also allow him to resemble his former All-NBA self. He could potentially form a dynamic duo alongside first-time All-Star Domantas Sabonis, who has improved every season since entering the league. A fully recovered Oladipo will no doubt scare teams and make the Pacers a tough out in the postseason.

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