John Hammond announced Tuesday that the Milwaukee Bucks will pick up the third year, $3.5 million option on Carlos Delfino.
In his second year as a Buck, the small forward averaged a career high 11.5 points on 39% shooting from the field and 37% shooting from three. Delfino led the Bucks in three-point field goals with 105 despite missing 33 games due to a concussion and symptoms he couldn’t seem to shake.
Seen as a reliable defender and a good fit in an offense that struggled throughout last season, Coach Scott Skiles confidence in Delfino was obvious throughout the second half of last season. As Milwaukee made their final playoff push in late March, Delfino was regularly seeing better than 40 minutes a night while high priced off-season acquisition Corey Maggette logged DNP-CDs. To his credit, Delfino responded to the minutes, twice scoring 30 points while averaging better than 19 points during a seven game stretch that ended the month of March.
As it stands, Delfino would seem to have the inside track on the starting small forward position once again, given his shooting touch, apparent grasp on where to be in Milwaukee’s offense and competitiveness defensively. While not the quickest player on the roster, Delfino positions himself well defensively and has the size and strength to match up with most wings in the league. His athleticism doesn’t leap out if you casually watch him, but at times he’s shown he’s capable of some impressive blocks and dunks.
Given the disaster that was last season, a possible off-season roster shake up that could result of it and Maggette’s uncertain fit in the Bucks future, Delfino’s familiarity with Coach Skiles and General Manager Hammond could remain one of his biggest assets this coming season.
Jeremy Schmidt writes the Milwaukee Bucks blog Bucksketball.com. Follow him on Twitter. Become a fan on Facebook (right sidebar).