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Bucks sign DeMarcus Cousins to contract to add front court depth

2021 NBA Playoffs - 	LA Clippers v Phoenix Suns

PHOENIX, AZ - JUNE 28: DeMarcus Cousins #15 of the LA Clippers looks on before the game against the Phoenix Suns during Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals of the 2021 NBA Playoffs on June 28, 2021 at Phoenix Suns Arena in Phoenix, Arizona. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

Brook Lopez played for the Bucks opening night and got his ring, but the center who was critical to them winning their first championship in 50 years has not set foot on the court since then due to a back injury.

In need of more depth along the front line, the Bucks have signed veteran big man DeMarcus Cousins to a non-guaranteed contract, a story that multiple reporters broke at almost the same time.

The Bucks are giving Bobby Portis more run at center, but the biggest change is Giannis Antetokounmpo has played 62% of his minutes this season at center. While that is an effective lineup for Milwaukee, it can put more physical strain on Antetokounmpo than the Bucks want this early in the marathon of an NBA season.

Cousins played 16 games for the Clippers last season and performed pretty well, scoring 7.8 points and grabbing 4.5 rebounds in 12.9 minutes a night, and he shot 53.7% from the floor. He’s not a great defender at this point in his career, but he will be able to play the drop-back style for bigs that the Bucks use with Lopez.

Cousins is likely only with the Bucks until Lopez returns, but this could be a solid pickup for a team getting its legs under them after a slow start to the season.