Jabari Parker returns to Bucks lineup Friday night vs. Knicks

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It’s been hard to evaluate exactly how big a playoff threat Milwaukee is in part because they fired their coach, and partly because they have yet to be fully healthy this season and blended together this season. It’s not just Malcolm Brogdon going in and out of the lineup or the trade for Eric Bledsoe.

Jabari Parker has yet to set foot on the court in a Bucks uniform this season, but that will change on Friday.

Parker was the second dangerous scoring option for the Bucks last season averaging 20.1 points until he tore his left ACL last Feb. 8 (against Houston). It was his second major injury to the same knee in three years, and it was expected to take about a year for him to return.

Once Parker gets his legs under him again, the Bucks will have a top-five player in Giannis Antetokounmpo and two other real scoring threats in Parker and Bledsoe, plus quality role players around them such as Khris Middleton and John Henson. How dangerous does that make them in the playoffs? On paper, very, if they defend well. We’ll see if reality works out that way.