The Milwaukee Bucks very well could be onto something here. The team could follow this particular deal by using the amnesty clause on Drew Gooden, clearing over $11 million in payroll space along the way, which could go along the way toward cap space that could be used to sign a potential starter.
Or, they could be confusing us all over again.
“This particular deal” involves defensive mastermind Luc Mbah a Moute being sent to the Sacramento Kings for a second round pick in 2016, and a second round pick in 2018. The newest Kings forward is a defensive stopper, a long-armed hybrid forward working on a very reasonable contract (Luc will be paid just under $9 million over the next two seasons), and he won’t turn 27 until later this summer.
Unless the Bucks are clearing salary for a major move – whether this means gutting where it can to accept salary in some sort of sign and trade featuring Monta Ellis or Brandon Jennings, or signing a player outright – this seems like another terrible move for Milwaukee. It’s true that the Bucks were going nowhere, slowly, with Mbah a Moute. And second round picks, in this NBA economy, are to be valued.
The problem here is that you trade for second round picks in the hopes of finding a gem like Luc Mbah a Moute.
I’m not overvaluing Luc. At his best he’s your weak link as a go-to defender on a great team. On a middling team? You’d prefer him to come off the bench in reserve of a top of the line scorer. He’s quite tradeable, and in a lot of ways replaceable.
Are the Bucks planning on replacing him? Until they do – or until we find out that they’re trying – we’ll reserve judgment. As the deal stands, though, this could be another massive whiff for Bucks general manager John Hammond. And a fine pickup for newly-instated Kings GM Pete D’Alessandro.
Get crankin’, John. Because something has to come after this … right?