If the Milwaukee Bucks are to advance past the first round of the playoffs, it will have to be without Khris Middleton for the remainder of the series — if not more.
The veteran suffered a sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee and will miss at least two weeks, according to the team. At that point, he will be re-evaluated to determine a potential return.
Middleton went down in the fourth quarter of Milwaukee’s Game 2 loss to the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday evening. The series is now heading to Chicago for Game 3 on Friday, with the series tied 1-1.
The former second-round draft pick has long been one of the Bucks’ best and most consistent players since being acquired by the franchise prior to the 2013-14 campaign. He’s averaged more than 20 points per game in four of the last five seasons and is also recognized as one of the game’s premier three-point shooters, hitting 39.2 percent of his shots from beyond the arc for his 10-year career.
Given the way the Bulls stormed back to win Game 2 once Middleton was gone, the loss is mildly concerning for Milwaukee. The team should have enough firepower to overcome Chicago in the long series; however, a potential showdown with Boston (should they hold on to beat Brooklyn) would be a tough challenge if Middleton were to miss any of those games.