Bucksketball Podcast

Okay, I’ll bite: Bucks rumored to be interested in Josh Smith

| February 17, 2013

Category: Trade Rumors

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Smith would give the Bucks a combination of size and explosiveness on the wing that they haven’t had in quite a while, if ever. (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images)

I hate trade rumors. But you love them and I love you, so I’ll give you what you want.

From the mighty Adrian Wojnarowski over at Yahoo! via his Twitter feed, the Milwaukee Bucks are apparently at least rumored to be in the mix for Josh Smith:

The small forward/power forward/athlete who pretty much plays wherever he’s needed Smith, 27, will be an unrestricted free agent this summer and it’s been rumored the Hawks have been shopping him for some time. He’s likely to command a salary in the high double figures this off-season and apparently that’s not apart of Atlanta’s long term plan.

What exactly would Atlanta want in return from the Bucks for one of the biggest names on the trade market?

With the Hawks having lost Lou Williams, it’s only natural that Bucks fans flock to the idea of unloading Monta Ellis in any Smith related deal. Trading Ellis for Smith straight up works from a salary perspective, but that’s probably the only way it works.

Adding Samuel Dalembert and Tobias Harris to the deal on Milwaukee’s end and 3-point specialist Anthony Morrow to the deal on Atlanta’s end also works and gives the Hawks a young player back in return while keeping Milwaukee’s perilously thin backcourt stocked with a shooting guard.

If the Bucks were to actively pursue and get far into Smith trade discussions, one would think they’re doing so with the assumption that Smith would merely be a short term rental and not a potential long term Buck. His comments before the 2010 playoffs left Bucks fans a bit scorned and seem to indicate he’d rather be in a market with more to do. To each their own. If he were the vehicle through which Monta Ellis was removed from Milwaukee and able to deliver a nice short term return, he’ll be greeted and bid farewell to as a hero.

But whether Milwaukee would want to surrender a player with the potential of Harris for a couple of months of Smith remains to be seen. Likewise, we have no idea what the Hawks would actually want back, if maybe Ersan Ilyasova would get involved or anything else.

My early thoughts on the matter are that any move made for Smith would hasten a breakup of the Bucks as we currently know them this off-season, while keeping Milwaukee firmly in the playoff picture for the rest of the regular season. I mean, think of a defense with Luc Mbah a Moute at the three, Smith at the four and Larry Sanders at the five. Even with Brandon Jennings and Morrow manning the one and two, that sounds pretty intimidating.

Going for it for the rest of this year while setting everything up to reset come summer time though, that sounds like a pretty reasonable way to approach the next five months, as Milwaukee has come too far to try and tank away the rest of 2012-13. We’ll see how this one shakes out, but color me moderately intrigued with the possibilities.

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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 (21)

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  1. wscaddie56 says:

    How can a Tosa boy not suggest Devin coming home? I mean I know you went to West but my word.
    His ability to play both guard spots and his size would help us.

    • ThisIsntUnicef says:

      I’ve been saying that this whole time. So far you’re the only person to agree with me

    • Jeremy Schmidt says:

      Haha. It would make for a good story, certainly the local media would do backflips.

      If Jennings were included in the deal, I could see the logic and getting Harris back for certain.

  2. Patti says:

    I like your approach to the subject, Jeremy. Also, I’m not naive to think that NBA players wouldn’t prefer to be on Heat, Knicks, Nets, Lakers or Clippers…toss in Bulls for fun…but not everyone can be on those teams.

    I don’t think too much should be read into his comment about Milwaukee. He comes into town for one night and just needed someone to show him a good time, Milwaukee style. How ’bout it? Polar Club?

  3. Brad says:

    Bucks have surprisingly a lot of assets this year. I’d hate to give up too many of them for a rental player that very likely doesn’t push us much further (if at all) towards contending this year. I’d hope a deal with Atlanta is either a) part of a 3 team deal in which Smith is shipped elsewhere or b) also includes a player/asset for the future like say Teague

  4. Justin says:

    I say Heck no, especially if guys like Al Jefferson and LaMarcus Aldridge are legitimately being shopped.. I know they come at a higher price, but are much better

  5. Josh says:

    As a Hawks fan, Larry Sanders would have to be involved in the deal to make it worth it for Atlanta. He is exactly what we need. Defense, rebounding and the size needed to allow Horford to move to the 4.

    • Matthew says:

      Yeah and I just saw 2 reports/rumors that the Hawks would want Sanders in the deal.. I don’t see the Bucks sending him away for an expiring contract like Smith. Ellis, I could see. Jennings, maybe. Sanders, no.

      • Josh says:

        Yeah. Which is why I think ultimately he will be sent somewhere else like Philly or New Jersey. Or they might just keep him and try one more year in the playoffs(which would not be the best option in my opinion)

    • Brad says:

      I’m sure the Hawks would love to get their hands on Sanders. For me he’s about as close as it comes to being untouchable as the Bucks have. If he was the price for a 30 game rental of Smith I’d want nothing to do with it

  6. happyfeethustle says:

    Ok….breathe,breathe,….breathe. I have to settle down a bit!

    Exciting to even contemplate a BIG name and talent arriving at BMO BC to suit up in Bucks uni.

    Few issues here: This franchise cannot under any circumstance trade away
    our NBA block shot leading Colonel Sanders, the Blocktopus, The law of the lane! L A R R Y :) Big men with these skills are far an few between-not too mention his passion for WINNING and crowd pleasing persona!!!!!

    Trading away Ersan is risky too, often times his rebounding and putbacks
    on the offensive glass SAVE this struggling team in critical moments. Not to mention his shooting prowess… However, cant get something for nothing; I know.

    Most importantly…… I would be heartbroken to see us trade away talent and draft picks for a 31 game rental AND possibly playoffs – NO guarantees in this league. If Bucks could secure Smith for at least another year, maybe Milwaukee can shake the “poor city to play in” stigma. Other legitimate talent may be swayed to joining Smith, Sanders
    Jennings(?)-Ellis(?)-… Breathe…Breathe…

    Fingers crossed- GO BUCKS GO

    • Ross says:

      I completely agree, a 31 game rental would not be worth giving up the only real trade assets the Bucks have in Jennings and Ellis.

      • Bryce KAZ says:

        Bucks-j smith anthony morrow hawks- ersan gooden harris 2nd round pick…j smoove wants to sign long term with milwaukee because of jennings and ellis and jennings and ellis would sign long term with them and j smoove as a big 3 plus if we can keep sanders we have two great big men and the best backcourt in the league #feardadeer

  7. Ross says:

    This would be a dreadful trade for the Bucks. They would ruin any team chemistry they have, miss the playoffs or lose first round due to the complete lack of SG, and then Josh Smith would leave in the offseason.
    The Bucks need to look for a young player or two that is not quite at an all-star level to trade Ellis and/or Jennings for; that way, they could retain him in the offseason and progress as a team.

    • OB says:

      Have you watched the Bucks this year? They already play without a SG. If it gets Ellis out of Milwaukee and removes the possibility of him opting into next year, I am all for it.

  8. Ted says:

    As the #3 option on the Hawks wit Joe Johnson and Al Horford they never got past the 2nd round so why would a Jennings and (or) Ellis with Josh Smith as the focal point of the offense do any better?

    If they wanna rent him for 30 games and try to win a playoff series that’s cool I guess, but I really hope the Bucks don’t consider paying this man 20 million dollars a season for the next 4 to 5 years.

    • Bryce KAZ says:

      they can easily sign smith to a 4 yr deal paying him 16 mil and sign jennings to a 4 yr 20 mil and ellis to a 4 yr 12 mil a yr

  9. Dan says:

    What people don’t understand, is that the Bucks need to win NOW, and not rebuild again for another two years, they could very well be in jeopardy of losing the team if they keep tanking these next few years. Hammond wants to win now, and if it means a 31 game rental, they’ll do it. Milwaukee loves its mid-season rentals

    • SillyBilly says:

      Baloney, the bucks could eventually relocate but the window is bigger than two years. I don’t think they should go for smith but they should certainly do something to modify the roster and build around sanders Henson and ilyasova

  10. Bryce KAZ says:

    what dont you ppl get…jennings and ellis are top 3 backcourts in league why get rid of them …get pieces that make them happy and smith would be a huge piece.