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Bucks Make 2 Major Moves at the Stroke of Midnight

There was a lot of talk surrounding the competency of the Bucks front office as a whole because of the Chris Paul trade to the Suns that happened earlier in the day.

The Bucks let Chris Paul slip through their fingers but they made blockbuster deals for Jrue Holiday and Bogdan Bogdanovic

the Bucks also receive justin james in this trade

What did the Bucks receive?

Jrue Holiday, Bogdan Bogdanovic, and Justin James.

What did the Bucks give up?

Eric Bledsoe, George Hill, 3 First round picks, and 2 pick swaps for Jrue Holiday.

Donte Divincenzo, Ersan Ilyasova, and Dj Wilson for Bogdan Bogdanovic.

Did the Bucks win these deals?

The Jrue holiday trade is a Huge win for the Bucks. Bogdanovic is already 28 years old and is in the prime of his career. Is he a good addition? most definitely. But was it worth giving up Divincenzo who is touted to make all defensive teams? probably not. But the Bucks have made their intentions clear. They are going all in for the chip and they will be hoping Giannis will sign a supermax extension before the season starts on Dec 21.

Breaking down the Deals

Jrue Holiday and Eric Bledsoe:

The lack of additional playmaking and a reliable 3rd scorer are what the Bucks missed during the playoffs in September. Not to mention Holiday brings some veteran leadership to go with his All-NBA defense. Not only did the Bucks gain Holiday, they also managed to get rid of Bledsoe’s contract. Bledsoe will get paid north of $55 million on his contract over the next 3 years which isn’t ideal.

Frankly, to be an ideal fit next to Giannis, a player needs to have the ability to make catch and shoot 3’s at a high clip. Holiday shoots 37% on Catch and shoot 3’s compared to Bledsoe’s 28.9%, ranking in the 7th percentile according to bball index.

In terms of playmaking and perimeter defense, their numbers are really similar. Bledsoe’s numbers are a little better, largely due to the fact that he played on the best defensive team in the league. Though he was a major part of that, having Giannis, Brook Lopez, and Divincenzo definitely helped.

George Hill

Hill was scorching hot from 3 last season shooting 48% from 3 overall, 48.3% on pull up 3’s, and 48.4% on catch and shoot 3’s. Playing next to Giannis and Middleton benefited him as he ranked in the 64th percentile in Openness Rating – an estimate of how open a player’s 3pt attempt is on average. Relatively, there were a lot more shots that went uncontested compared to what he will face in New Orleans. Nevertheless, he’s a solid pickup for the Pelicans.

But what about the 3 first round picks they gave up for Holiday?

The Bucks are clearly one of he top 3 teams after making these moves. The first round picks are likely to fall in the mid 20’s of their respective drafts. Besides, I don’t think the Cream City fans will fret over the loss of 3 first round picks during their championship parade that seems like a real possibility next season.

What do the Bucks get in Bogdanovic?

It’s no secret that the Kings have been looking for potential suitors for Bogdanovic even before Milwaukee came calling.

To a fan who has not watched much of the kings, what does the 28 year old bring to the Table?

Strengths

  1. Perimeter Shooting, Off ball Movement: This is probably the most coveted skill in today’s NBA, and arguably Bogdanovic’s strongest suit. Though he shot just 36.1% from 3-point land this season, that number is bound to increase playing as likely the fourth option behind Giannis, Middleton, and Holiday. His off ball activity will be key to their success and his efficiency is in a great position to increase. Bogdanovic scored 0.95 PPP off handoffs (68th percentile), 1.42 PPP on cuts the basket (75th percentile) and 0.9 PPP coming off screens (61st percentile).
  2. Playmaking: Though his versatility as a playmaker isn’t as good as one might expect, he still has the ability to be a good playmaker and secondary ball handler.

The two key weaknesses in his game are finishing at the rim and his defense. Though not terrible, can be a liability at times on that side of the court. However, with 4 strong defenders along side Bogdanovic, the Bucks should be able to hide him defensively.

Why are a few Bucks fans disappointed over losing Divincenzo?

Below is a thread made about during the NBA hiatus (does not include bubble or playoff stats). He was a Fan Favorite for a reason!

By the looks of it, the Bucks will have a starting 5 of Giannis, Middleton, Holiday, Lopez, and Bogdanovic. That is a monstrous starting 5, but winning a championship will depend on how they fill out the rest of their roster. They currently have Thanasis Antetokounmpo and Justin James under contract to go along with this lineup. The Bucks have a full Mid level exception to use, and they likely wouldn’t mind dipping into the Luxury tax.

Though they are starting to get a little expensive, things are looking up in Milwaukee!

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