Giannis Antetokounmpo is getting some more help in Milwaukee, as the Bucks have apparently won the Eric Bledsoe sweepstakes.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski broke news of the trade being finalized on Tuesday morning, as the Suns get rid of their disgruntled point guard, who has not been with the team for two weeks after tweeting “I don’t wanna be here.” He now has gotten his wish, and will be heading to Milwaukee to join Antetokounmpo and company.
The Bucks managed to pull off the trade without having to part ways with reigning Rookie of the Year Malcolm Brogdon, instead sending Phoenix a first round pick along with center Greg Monroe, per Wojnarowski.
According to Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe, a second round pick is also going to Phoenix and the first round will have lottery protections.
The move is one that shows the Bucks are committed to winning now and trying to take advantage of the MVP caliber season Giannis Antetokounmpo is currently having, but also maintaining their youth movement that has them as one of the team’s expected to be a contender in the East for years to come.
Aside from Antetokounmpo, the Bucks have Khris Middleton and not an awful lot else on the offensive end in terms of creativity and ability on the ball, and are desperate for someone else that can score when Antetokounmpo is off the floor.
Bledsoe, for any of his faults on the defensive end, is still a quality NBA scorer from the point guard position, averaging over 20 points per game each of the last two seasons. His impact on the Bucks will be even greater if he can return to the three-point shooting form of 2015-16, when he shot over 37 percent from deep, as Milwaukee is in desperate need of better spacing as Middleton is one of the few consistent three-point threats on the roster.
By not parting with Brogdon, the Bucks significantly increased their backcourt depth with this trade. The frontcourt gets thinner, but it likely means John Henson and Thon Maker both will see more time on the court at the center position in Monroe’s absence.
The Suns get out from under Bledsoe’s deal, acquire a first round pick, and avoid taking on any long term money as Monroe is on an expiring contract. It was clear to them that the deals they wanted for Bledsoe weren’t out there, but the Bucks were giving them the closest thing to what they wanted — a pick and salary relief.