It’s rather crude, you’d surely submit, but a group of desperate Milwaukee Bucks fans have launched their own crowd-sourced campaign to raise a billboard in Milwaukee to remind the team’s front office of an undeniable NBA truth. To win in the NBA, you usually need a star. And the easiest way to acquire a star is to lose enough to draft one. And the only way to lose enough is to stop blindly clinging to mediocre players in hopes of a lower rung playoff berth.
No, Bucks fans want an entire lower rung season, in order to acquire good enough lottery odds to draft a star. And this is why the (dirty, dirty) minds behind SaveOurBucks.com have set up an IndieGoGo.com page in hopes of raising enough money to launch this billboard in their team’s city:
The group, as of this writing, is well on their way to a “$3,000 to $4,000” goal, though “$5,000” is listed on the IndieGoGo.com website. Here’s part of the reasoning behind the drive to launch the billboard:
In order for the Bucks to regain their footing with the fans and the community, they need to drastically improve the product on the court. As we have seen with the Packers in 1992 and the Brewers in 2004, moribund franchises can be turned around quickly. The Bucks can be a successful small market franchise both on the court and financially. However, for the Bucks to do this, they need to change their approach. One way to help change this approach is if the fan base can let the organization know that they will support a full rebuilding of the team under a new front office direction. This means being willing to part with high-priced journeymen veteran players and focus on building around young talent acquired with high draft picks. The talent rich 2014 NBA draft is the place to start.
As Eric Freeman noted in these pages months ago, the Bucks do not want to cast aside those hopes for a .500 record. The team wants to make the playoffs, even if the ceiling for this particular roster – even at full health – is not entirely impressive. In an awful bit of irony that I’m not sure if Bucks fans are in favor for, the team isn’t at full health. And the hoped-for 41 wins seem a long way away, because with franchise big man Larry Sanders out after allegedly injuring his wrist in a bar fight, the team will have to go 39-30 the rest of the way in order to grab that .500 mark. And even at full strength, this is not a 39-30 team.
That’s sort of what happens when you pin your hopes on overachieving late lottery picks like Sanders, John Henson, and Brandon Knight alongside journeymen like O.J. Mayo and Zaza Pachulia, with a respected if retread coach like Larry Drew leading the way. Milwaukee general manager John Hammond has been the subject of mostly league-wide scorn for his attempts to stick in the middle – but to Bucks fans this is no joke.
This is their team, in a city that seems to be falling out of love with NBA basketball. And despite the (hoped-for) presence of a cool court and a top-notch promotional and broadcasting team, we can’t blame fair-weather former Bucks fans for fleeing. There’s no joy in rooting for a team that has no chance at a championship, while at the same time playing at a middling level that would leave the squad’s draft chances out of the top three. It’s a maddening purgatory, one that Bucks fans have been dealing with for over a decade.
With that 2-11 start, Milwaukee may be well on its way back up the lottery ranks. Still, a rather vocal batch of Bucks fans want to remind the team’s front office that this is to be embraced. And even if their play on words is a little crude, we support the cause.
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