Brook Lopez set to return to Bucks lineup Monday vs. Jazz; Bembry out for season

Los Angeles Lakers v Milwaukee Bucks
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Welcome back to the NBA, Brook Lopez. As for easing into games again… we need you to guard and battle with Rudy Gobert all night.

Brook Lopez played opening night for the Bucks, got his ring, but has been out since with back surgery. He is now set to return on Monday night against the Jazz, the team announced Sunday.

Lopez was a critical part of the Bucks run to a title last season. While he averaged 12.3 points and five rebounds a game for the Bucks last season, his more important role was as the anchor of Milwaukee’s drop-back defense. Without him this season it’s been a lot of Bobby Portis, and Giannis Antetokounmpo has played 42% of his minutes at center. Lopez returning brings both size for certain potential playoff matchups and the ability to space the floor on offense.

Along with Lopez, George Hill will return to the Bucks lineup Monday after missing the last 16 games with neck soreness. He will play minutes behind Jrue Holiday at the point and gives coach Mike Budenholzer a veteran he can lean on.

The bad news for Milwaukee and DeAndre' Bembry is that the wing is now out for the season after tearing his ACL and MCL in his right knee in the game at Golden State. The Bucks had signed Bembry after the Nets waived him, and he played eight games for Milwaukee.