Bucksketball Podcast

Milwaukee Bucks acquire Stephen Jackson, Shaun Livingston and Beno Udrih

| June 23, 2011

Category: Draft Talk, The Off Season

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And we’re off.

Draft day begins with a bang for Milwaukee Bucks fans. All week we heard the Bucks were itching to make a move, but not necessarily just dump salary. So that’s how we got here. Milwaukee is bringing in the talented, but volatile, Stephen Jackson along with Shaun Livingston and Beno Udrih and the number 19 pick in today’s draft. Out the door head Corey Maggette and John Salmons (much to the delight of Bucks fans I’m sure).

The salary info:

TeamPlayersYear 1Year 2Year 3Year 4
BucksStephen Jackson9,256,50010,059,750
Shaun Livingston3,500,0001,000,000
Beno Udrih6,925,4007,372,200
19th pick
BobcatsCorey Maggette10,262,06910,924,138
7th pick
KingsJohn Salmons$8,500,0008,083,0007,583,0001,000,000
10th pick

Over the length of all of the deals involved, the Bucks will save $8,238,357 and the difference between the salaries of the 19 and 10 picks.

But this isn’t just a salary dump.

The Bucks appear to thrive with guards and forwards capable of handling the ball and making plays for others. Once upon a time, that’s how Salmons endeared himself so much to the franchise. After coming over from the Bulls, he drove and kicked right into the hearts and minds of Bucks fans. Not last year though. Last year he was more than a step slow and lacked any explosion whatsoever. A younger, cheaper Beno Udrih will attempt to slide into a fraction of that role he once played so well.

Udrih can spend time splitting between the one and the two — he’s a scoring point that should be able to move over in Milwaukee’s system, so long as he can keep his head above water defensively.

Livingston is, was and always will be as pure of a point guard as a point guard can be. His passing instincts are exceptional and his height gives him the ability to read defense like a quarterback. His length can help him with some point guards defensively, but his size can be exploited by the smaller quicker variety of point guard (think JJ Barea).

Milwaukee’s true success in this deal (unless you count escaping from the burdensome contract of Salmons as its true success), was swapping out Maggette for Stephen Jackson.

Yes, he’s crazy and yes, he was ejected within minutes of his last appearance at the Bradley Center, but Jackson can play ball. More importantly, he’s a much better fit on the court than the single-minded Maggette. Despite his reputation as a shoot first, last and always player, Jackson is actually a fairly accomplished passer. Last season he assisted on 18.4% of his possession, a monstrous number when compared to the 11.3% Maggette posted. He’s better in terms of creation of offense for the entire team and creating offense was a huge flaw for last season’s Bucks.

For now, this doesn’t appear much of a failure or success for the Bucks. They’ve acquired a couple players who seem like they may be better fits than the players they disposed of. Whether or not that will pan out, we’ll know when the ball drops next season. Milwaukee without question is saving some cash and appears to have improved on a personnel front. Whether the savings and the “right now” improvements will balance out moving down from 10 to 19 we won’t know for quite some time.

So now appears to be time to wait and see. It’s all we can do.

Jeremy Schmidt writes the Milwaukee Bucks blog Bucksketball.com. Follow him on Twitter.

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About the Author ()

Jeremy Schmidt writes the Milwaukee Bucks blog Bucksketball. He founded it in January of 2009 because he hated his job. It’s like basketball, but with Bucks instead of basket. I know ... I’m sorry. He might come off as a bit negative, but I'm really not so bad. He just wants the Bucks to succeed, so he points out areas where they are coming up short. Someone has got to do it and he's ornery and opinionated enough to take on that task. He isn't sure if this should be in third person or not. Contact him at Jeremy@Bucksketball.com if you must use e-mail.

Comments (14)

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  1. Greg Richards says:

    I am excited about the idea of Livingston//Jennings back court at times. It frees Jennings up to score in some different ways. I think the Bucks got immediately better in this trade, and they can still add guard help in the draft. I also think this means Hobson might be sticking around.

  2. Clint Haas says:

    I think Jackson has a fairly good reputation as a defender as well (for whatever that’s worth). I just hope this means the Bogut is staying put.

  3. Bizzucks says:

    I like this trade too. Good old Hammonds, that guy can’t sit still. He realized he made a mistake and made up for after only one season. Can you imagine how the fans would have dealt with another year of crud from Maggette and Salmons? It’s better than sitting on it and forcing it down our throats in the hope that it would look good for him later.

  4. Marq says:

    I get the feeling that Hammonds ain’t done dealin’ yet.

  5. Josh says:

    Amazing, amazing deal by John Hammond. He got rid of two horrid contracts in Maggette and Salmons to bring in Stephen Jackson, who is a major upgrade over Salmons, and Beno Udrih, who is an excellent backup point guard. Shaun Livingston will probably be the back-up combo guard, splitting minutes with Keyon. Beno Udrih can run an offense. The Bucks have immediately become contenders for a playoff spot. Now we’ll see whether the draft pick helps any.

    Oh, and for all of you who hate this trade, even if it completely blows up, they’re all off the books in two years.

  6. Jeremy Schmidt says:

    @Josh
    “Oh, and for all of you who hate this trade, even if it completely blows up, they’re all off the books in two years.”

    That seems like a selling point that we’re too often sold. Isn’t everyone tired of waiting for the Bucks to be good? I’m not saying it’s a bad trade, but I think we overvalue that point in particular. The trade could work out well, or it could not, but for Milwaukee’s sake, it better work out as planned, because nothing last season did.

  7. Andy says:

    Did anyone hear that Jackson is “not pleased” about coming to Milwaukee? I hate it when athletes hate on the Mil. And it makes it infinitely harder for me to cheer those athletes on.

    Though, I will need a replacement now for my Salmons jersey…

    All in all, a smart trade. Now we just need everyone healthy and happy.

  8. Nicktorious BIG says:

    I want Jimmer! Why won’t the Bucks take back Jimmer? He’d be our 3 point kingpin… he’d hit 3′s all the way from Brady Street!

  9. Josh says:

    @Jeremy Schmidt
    It’s a good point and I definitely agree. I was as frustrated as anyone going to the BC to watch the Bucks lose over and over again. Watching them on TV was equally painful. Earl Boykins provided perhaps the most joy of the entire season. I am more high on the players the Bucks got over Salmons for years three and four. There was no way he was going to get better down the line. Although you are absolutely right, completely falling off the ledge after 2009-2010 was bad. We are better than getting to the playoffs once every few years.

    @Andy
    He did. Stephen Jackson is a hardcore, old school player but he’s been to the promised land with San Antonio in 2003. It’s all about meeting with him a.s.a.p. and running through all of the plans. He has a better situation now than he did in Charlotte. We want Captain Jack to run our team, at least for the next year or so. I don’t see how he can pass up an opportunity to make one last playoff run.

    @Nicktorious BIG
    Coach Skiles would have never let him play. His defense is far below where Skiles would trust him on the floor.

  10. sfballer23 says:

    NC guy here, been keeping up with the bobcats the last few years. You guys just got a lot better with this trade, regardless if media says it was a fair trade all around. Stephen Jackson can really play and he plays with heart every night. In a bobcats uniform I’ve seen him hit game winning shots, attract double teams almost every night, and break Lebron James ankles. Shaun Livingston is a post up nightmare for smaller pg’s. His mid range jump shot is on point as well. Jackson’s game is all star material, and Livingston is a great role player. You just got a lot better.

  11. CJ says:

    Question from a Bulls fan: does this trade make it likely that the Bucks will shop Delfino?

  12. Jeremy Schmidt says:

    @sfballer23
    I’m excited about Livingston if he sticks around, I’ve always thought the world of him and as a backup he has no pressure.

    @CJ
    I don’t envision they would want to shop Delfino. He’s still likely the starting three, with Jackson at the two. Delfino is the team’s best three-point shooter by far now.

  13. sfballer23 says:

    Jeremy,
    Jack was better in Charlotte at the 3 when Gerald Henderson played the 2. Hes a great defender, but is better at guarding 3′s than smaller/quicker 2′s… I’m really excited about seeing a brandon jennings/ stephen jackson back court tho