Tyler Herro isn't the only Wisconsinite poised for a big NBA season (plus a look at where former Milwaukee Bucks are playing)


Former Whitnall High School standout Tyler Herro, who led the Miami Heat with 27 points off the bench on 10-of-18 shooting Thursday in a 137-95 blowout win over the Milwaukee Bucks, isn't the only Wisconsinite who'll be making waves this season in the NBA.

Herro hit 4 of 8 from 3-point range, including one just inside halfcourt at the end of the first quarter to cap a frenetic sequence. 

THIS SEQUENCE. TYLER HERRO AT THE BUZZER.

The Heat were up 40-17 against the defending champs at the end of the first quarter 😳 pic.twitter.com/YKAEQYGG2q

— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 22, 2021

He added six rebounds and five assists in a thorough overall performance against his hometown team. He also turned the feat in 24 minutes, which (according to StatsMuse) marks the first 25/5/5 game for a Heat player in 25 minutes or less in the past 20 years.

Former Marquette University star Jimmy Butler added 21 points for Miami in the victory as the squad opened the year 1-0.

Here's a look at some other players Wisconsin fans may be following this NBA season:

Golden State Warriors loaded with local ties

Golden State has started 2-0, and not only does it include three players with local ties, two former Milwaukee high school players are in the starting lineup.

Former Milwaukee King star Jordan Poole scored 20 points, second on the team behind Steph Curry (21), in a 121-114 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday.

Poole, the third-year player who received light consideration for last year's Most Improved Player in the NBA, was given quite the vote of confidence by Jonathan Tjarks of The Ringer, with a story of opening-night takeaways labeling Poole as the "key to the Warriors' season."

"Golden State took control of the game when Steph Curry was sitting at the start of the fourth quarter, something that rarely happened last season," Tjarks wrote. "They ran their offense through third-year guard Jordan Poole, who would be one of the front-runners for Sixth Man of the Year if he weren’t starting in place of the still-injured Klay Thompson. Poole, who finished with 20 points and three assists, could have a breakout season as the Warriors’ second option. ...

"They have no one besides Steph who can create their own offense. It was clear what the Lakers’ game plan was: Throw as many bodies as possible at Curry, and dare someone else to beat them. Poole did on opening night. If he can keep doing that, it will significantly raise Golden State’s ceiling."

Former Milwaukee Hamilton star Kevon Looney scored seven points in the season-opening win over the Lakers. Though injuries have slowed him at times during his six previous years in the NBA, the big man is a huge asset with James Wiseman still sidelined by a knee injury.

Juan Toscano-Anderson, a former Marquette University standout with a hard-earned path to NBA minutes, posted six points in 12 minutes, with three rebounds and an assist against the Lakers.

Looney scored six points and Poole nine in Golden State's 115-113 win over the Clippers on Thursday. Toscano-Anderson added three.

Haliburton, Kings prevail in opener

Oshkosh North graduate Tyrese Haliburton scored just two points in 29 minutes in the Sacramento Kings' 124-121 road win to kick off the season, but he also added four assists and a steal. 

Haliburton didn't receive any first-place votes for Rookie of the Year last year, an honor that went to Charlotte's LaMelo Ball, but he still took third in the voting after posting 13.0 points, 5.3 assists and 3.0 rebounds per game, with a 47% field-goal percentage, 41% from 3-point range and 86% at the line.

Jalen Johnson kicks off career for Hawks

Former Nicolet High School standout Jalen Johnson scored six points on 2-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc in just four minutes as the Hawks downed Dallas in their opener Thursday, 113-87.

Johnson also hauled in two rebounds in his first action after the Hawks made him the 20th pick of the first round earlier this year. He'll add depth to a Hawks team that figures to present a problem in the East after reaching last year's conference finals against the Bucks.

Others to watch

  • Sam Hauser, Boston Celtics. The Stevens Point standout and former Marquette player has a two-way contract.
  • Markus Howard, Denver Nuggets. Marquette's all-time leading scorer has a two-way deal.
  • Sam Dekker, Toronto Raptors. After playing overseas, the former first-round draft pick from Sheboygan Area Lutheran (and the University of Wisconsin) is back in the NBA. He didn't play in the Raptors' opener.
  • Matt Thomas, Chicago Bulls. The Onalaska native and shooting virtuoso was traded from the Raptors to the Jazz last year and then signed with the Bulls in September. He didn't play in the team's opener.
  • Frank Kaminsky, Phoenix Suns. The University of Wisconsin great saw some playing time in last year's NBA Finals. He didn't play in Wednesday's season opener.

Former Milwaukee Bucks

  • Torrey Craig, Indiana Pacers. Craig was briefly with the Bucks last year and then wound up squaring off against them with the Phoenix Suns in the NBA Finals. He signed with Indiana in August.
  • Sam Merrill, Memphis Grizzlies. Traded in the deal that brought Grayson Allen, Merrill won a ring last year with the Bucks and made the Grizzlies roster this season. He didn't see the floor in a 132-121 win over Cleveland to kick off the season.
  • Sterling Brown, Dallas Mavericks. Brown scored three points in 11 minutes during the team's opening loss to Atlanta, with five rebounds. He played with the Bucks for three seasons before joining the Rockets last year.
  • Robin Lopez, Orlando Magic. He played 13 minutes on opening night for Orlando after playing in Washington last season. Lopez was an endearing member of the 2019-20 Bucks (and, of course, the twin brother of current Bucks center Brook Lopez) and is now with his fourth team in four years.
  • Tobias Harris, Philadelphia 76ers. He remains one of the top players on one of the top teams in the East, with 20 points in 28 minutes in the team's opener against New Orleans. His departure after the 2012-13 season remains an annoyance to Bucks fans who felt the trade that brought J.J. Redick to the Bucks was a disaster.
  • Jabari Parker, Boston Celtics. The former No. 2 overall pick by the Bucks re-signed with the Celtics just before the season after the team waived him.
  • Christian Wood, Houston Rockets. An undrafted player who turned into a case of "what if" for Bucks fans after he flashed some promise in 2018-19, Wood was squeezed out by a roster crunch and made an immediate impact with New Orleans, then Detroit the following year. Last year, he scored 21 points per game with 9.6 rebounds for the Rockets. Wood scored 16 points in the season opener against Minnesota. 
  • Tony Snell, Portland Trail Blazers. Snell played with the Hawks team that fell to the Bucks in last year's Eastern Conference finals, and now he's looking to crack the rotation in Portland.
  • Ish Smith, Charlotte Hornets. He's 33 now, but the member of the 2012-13 Bucks team (the year "Bucks in 6" was born) is still fashioning an NBA career.
  • Garrett Temple, New Orleans Pelicans. He played in nine games for the 2010-11 Bucks, but the late-bloomer is still in the league at age 35.
  • Gary Payton II, Golden State Warriors. Payton played briefly with the Bucks over two seasons from 2016-18.

JR Radcliffe can be reached at (262) 361-9141 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at @JRRadcliffe.