Report: Bucks close to bringing back Carlos Delfino

Sharpshooter Carlos Delfino could be on his way back to Milwaukee. Familiarity is comfortable.

UPDATE: It’s been reported by Charles F. Gardner and Yahoo!’s Adrian Wojnarowski that Delfino’s deal will be for roughly $10 million over three years, though only the first two years will be guaranteed. The Bucks will have a team option in year three. The first two years will be worth $6.5 million, according to their reports. For a role player like Delfino, the numbers seem pretty reasonable. It’s essentially the same deal Mike Dunleavy got with the Chicago Bulls.

ESPN’s Marc Stein has had his hands full with Bucks free agent reports lately, this time regarding former Buck (and more recently, Rocket) Carlos Delfino:

Hearing: Bucks & Carlos Delfino are closing in on three-year deal after Rockets forced to part w/Delfino to create cap space for Dwight

– Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine), July 7, 2013

The move will bring the 30-year-old Argentinian back to Milwaukee, where he played for three years from 2009-2012. As Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel notes, Delfino played an important role in the ’09-’10 Fear the Deer playoff run but was plagued by concussion problems in his second season with the team.

Delfino provides offense from the small forward position (10.6 points and 3.3 rebounds per game last season) as well as a credible outside threat as he shot 37.5% from beyond the arc last year, slightly above his career average of 36.5%.


  • There’s the additional small forward depth we’ve been waiting for – Delfino can theoretically start (he started 53 of 54 games for the Bucks as recently as ’11-’12) and provides flexibility with Luc Richard Mbah a Moute at that position while Giannis Antetokounmpo develops.
  • Depending on the terms of the contract, this may be a fine pickup by the Bucks. Delfino has shown in the past that he’s a solid role player who should be comfortable returning to the team and contributing. It remains to be seen if he would be a full time starter or if he’d share time with Mbah a Moute based on matchups.
  • How much fun will it be to yell “DEL33333NO!” again? That was a seriously underrated nickname.
  • The Bucks sure seem to like their 3-year deals. As Ian pointed out yesterday, John Hammond’s contract also runs for the next three years. Coincidence?
  • Milwaukee seems to have a laser focus on role player type veterans right now, given this move, the Zaza Pachulia move and the O.J. Mayo move. It speaks to the “half-rebuild” Michael Hunt wrote about yesterday.

As always, nothing is final until the contract is signed. But this seems to be a pretty comfortable move for the Bucks.

Categories: Contract Stuff,The Off Season

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  1. If they are going for the win now (which by their previous moves it seems like unfortunately)i guess it makes sense depending on the amount. Im not a huge fan of getting players over the age of 30 at this point considering we are not challenging for a championship. Id rather get someone younger with more upside who could develop with this team over the next three years.

    • i have no idea what in the heck the bucks are thinking or what theyre planning. but it looks like theyre really going for this “half-tank” thing. here’s to mediocrity

      • I believe the bucks are just taking the most conservative approach to make sure a new arena gets built. I guess Herb Kohl believes the current level of fan-interest is adequate to meet that goal, and he is trying to avoid any major drop off in success which could put support for the arena in jeapordy.

        Now I don’t agree with this strategy or feel that it is at all necessary, but it certainly seems like that is what is happening. If we still had Tobias there would be a pretty good case for a pacers style remodel (rather than rebuild) but it seems we are taking that approach anyhow.

        • Randall Delaney

          Yeah I do wish they would have kept Tobias. But the move seemed exciting at the time with Redick, so you can’t have it both ways… The Bucks have no choice but to sign players like this. What else is out there? 3 years deals leads to every player on the roster in a manageable contract, allowing the Bucks to make trades and send the player packing if it doesn’t pan out. It also is enough time to re-sign a player if they do seem to fit. I think it’s the smartest thing to do. What else would you do if you couldn’t sign the top free agents (not saying Mayo isn’t)? No team is actually trying to tank. The Cavs tried to be good and ended up getting the first overall pick. Enough with the “tanking” talk. There’s no such thing and that proves it. Name a team that is trying to tank this coming season??? Nobody… Who’s trying there best to bring in decent players: One the teams are the Bucks. You either become better or worse. What is LeBron doing for Cleveland right now? Bosh for Toronto? CP3 for New Orleans? Howard for Magic? Melo for Nuggets? It’s rare a team retains a top player anyways and most of them don’t work out. Either way, tanking doesn’t exist and people need to start realizing this. The Bucks are trying, give them credit and get excited. Or become a fan of another team or another sport.

          • Some people that are upset about the bucks moves have been fans for decades. It’s not appropriate to tell them to root for another team or anther sport, disagreeing with the management of a pro sports org is acceptable, this is a free country and the Bucks have certainly provided reason for discontent among fans who buy the product.

          • Randall Delaney

            Okay SillyBilly, go be silly somewhere else, because you sound like you want to be serious with a name like that. I didn’t say you can’t disagree with management, but if you complain about every move then you shouldn’t even care what the team does, right? What reason for discontent have they provided? You’re delusional dude. Seems like people are so use to complaining, now you’re arguing with me why you should be able to complain. This is a new beginning not an end, don’t complain but embrace. You’re complaining does nothing but annoy people. Thanks for reading…

          • Give me a break, Randall! You writing that SillyBilly is annoying is not only uncalled-for and irksome (if not infuriating), but it is also ironic — ironic in that you can be very annoying yourself, and even obnoxious!
            The Bucks have been a mismanaged and miserable franchise for more than a decade, going back to about the time of the trade of Ray Allen. To sit back and put one’s trust in the management of the Bucks is lunacy, if performance means anything at all.
            Some of us, I think, have seen a time when the Bucks were a class act and a 60-win team — with Sidney Moncrief, Marques Johnson, Quinn Buckner, Bob Lanier, Junior Bridgeman, Brian Winters… then Terry Cummings, Jack Sickma, Paul Pressey, Ricky Pierce…(excuse me for any misspellings and for the players I left out.) Compare these guys to the players we have today, both on and off the court, and my hunch is that the contrast will appear really depressing.
            To love the Bucks doesn’t mean settling for the terrible teams we’ve been forced to suffer with for so long. One could argue that to love the Bucks is to fight against the selfish players and moribund management that we truly don’t deserve. We are first-class fans in a great city and state (and from around the country), and we should not feel inferior or expect anything less than excellence in our teams.
            So Randall, you young whippersnapper, welcome aboard this site of Bucksetball, but please tone it down a bit (at least that much) — and mind your manners!

          • Ya randall, no need to attack someone unless you want to be attacked yourself and you give us a lot of ammo with your picture. Also, i can name quite a few teams intentionally tanking. Magic(hasn’t signed anyone this offseason), celtics(traded away basically whole team except rondo who is coming off an injury so will hold off as long as possible before return), bobcats(who signed Al Jefferson but know itll take a lot more signings than that to break out of the bottom 3). All those stars you mentioned that left their teams was before the new collective bargaining agreement and not everybody left(Durant,Parker,etc).

  2. I hate to say it, but it does look like the Bucks are tanking the season.. These transactions obviously are all backups, except Mayo who is a starter by default.. hey bring on the lottery

    • The bucks would have a hard time tanking even if they wanted to. Boston and Philly are essentially rolling over, we will still be better than Orlando Charlotte and Toronto, and it remains to be seen if we can still best Detroit Cleveland and Washington. Then think about all of the poor teams in the west and getting a top 5 pick would be pretty tough even if that’s what Kohl and Hammond wanted. When you think about it that way the offseason moves don’t seem so terrible.

      • Randall Delaney

        Nah, you can’t really “tank” no matter what. Only team looking to rebuild is Boston and I wouldn’t be surprised if they come out swinging and possibly make the playoffs. Some teams are just not good, they’re not trying to tank. These moves look pretty good and Delfino helped make the Bucks a decent team before his concussions. How many better SF’s are available? Many teams need to fill positions and I’m glad Bucks are doing it before it’s too late and only bums remain available to sign. The Bucks biggest downfall has been having bench players that play poorly. Finally they are bringing in depth that are known for playing good off of the bench. And they also have players such as Wolters, Giannis, Henson, and even Ayon that have some great potential. There players are actually pretty young, so these guys needed experience as well. The Bucks looked great when old vets like Stackhouse and Kurt Thomas came in for a year. I say sign Jennings, amnesty Gooden, grab Nick Young and Michael Redd (Yes, Michael Redd for $850,000!!!) and get ready to do some Buckin’!!!

        • Bucks had one of the stronger benches in the league last year, it was arguably better than the starters in the first half of the season, so not sure what you are talking about here.

          • Randall Delaney

            Who played great off of the bench? Mike Dunleavy looked okay sometimes and Beno before he was traded. Udoh, Daniels, Dalembert didn’t do nothing all year but fill in time. Henson didn’t play in first half. Who is this strong bench you speak of? The only reason they looked decent is because our starters struggled. We had a great bench on paper but I don’t remember seeing much at the games. It was a bunch of Jennings and Ellis moments that kept us in games but didn’t win us too many games vs. top teams. If Jennings takes less isolated shots he will be great to bring back. The Bucks did not have a strong bench last year, it was a mirage because the bench played okay once in a while when the starters struggled (which was too often). So not sure what you are talking about here.

          • @Randall,
            I repeat, the bucks strong bench play was well noted in the first half of the 12/13 campaign. Its documented on this site as well as brew-hoop. Not a matter of debate.

            Lets not argue just for the sake of argument.

  3. Randall Delaney

    I like this move. What else are they suppose to do at the SF position? Not much left out there and it’s not a lot of money. Great article, Mitch! And great move by the Bucks. This almost fills their line-up. If they are actually trying to be a really good team this year they will resign Jennings, amnesty Gooden and bring in two Shooting Guards to play when Mayo needs a break. I think the Bucks could still afford a Nick Young and even bring back Michael Redd (for less than a million bucks) as a third SG off bench (why not since Zaza and Del3no coming back?). It would mean the world to Bucks fans and Redd to reunite, I know I would be excited!

    That gives you:
    PG: Brandon Jennings, Nate Wolters, Ish Smith
    SG: O.J. Mayo, Nick Young, Michael Redd
    SF: Luc Richard Mbah A Moute, Carlos Delfino, Giannis Antetokounmpo
    PF: Ersan Ilyasova, John Henson, Ekpe Udoh
    C: Larry Sanders, Zaza Pachulia, Gustavo Ayon

    And still would leave a bit of cap space I believe…

    That team doesn’t look Miami-like, but no team does. The key here is the excitement and possible potential. I think this line-up could light some teams up if they play team ball and stay healthy. What do you think?

  4. This is a good deal for a player like Delfino. Wont be surprised if he is the starting small forward this year. If the Bucks let Jennings go then perhaps they have a shot at being worse than the 11 seed and getting a decent draft pick. I wouldnt mind seeing Wolters run the show

    • Randall Delaney

      What is a decent draft pick? Almost any player they draft needs to develop. Then they will become a free agent and where will they go? Quit with the draft pick thing. It’s all a lottery anyways, which means the worse team doesn’t get the best pick. No point to suck on purpose. I think Jennings coming back is what needs to happen, the man is getting better and is only 23, TWENTY THREE!!! I do Wolters getting some minutes too though, he looks like a great pick. Maybe better than some of the top ten picks: which makes my point come full circle. No need to try to suck, quit with the thought. If you want a pick, pick your nose!!! Remember we had a number one pick: Andrew Bogut and he’s now gone and falling apart physically. Why aim for that? Why not become good through smart decisions and great coaching???

  5. happyfeethustle

    Yikes… Michael Redd? wowzers….love the Nick Young idea. He can light it up very good- great scorer! But, Michael Redd…i cant imagine that working at all. Little nostalgia there :)

    I was happy to hear Delfino is coming back. Yes..he is getting bit older,but i believe he still play at respectable level. Hope Hammond has another couple moves up his sleeve for upcoming season.


  6. Anyone who thinks tanking does not take place in the NBA does not remember the Greg Oden/Kevin Durant sweepstakes. Toward the end of the year the Bucks and Celtics were playing each other with third stringers when all of their starters were mysteriously hurt.

    And while it is true that a high draft pick doesn’t guarantee success, nor assure you of keeping said player, it does give fans hope. Lebron and Dwight left the teams that drafted them but not before giving eacha finals appearance. It doesn’t matter how much depth a team aquires. If they don’t have a top teir guy or two, they can’t compete for a title. The Bucks aren’t getting a big name free agent anytime soon so their best chance is to grab one in the draft. Again one could argue that a top pick doesn’t guarantee a superstar, it doesn’t take a ton of research to see that it improves your chances greatly.

    If you look at the franchise guys out there right now, how many were not at least top five picks? Kobe and KG but they were two of the first to come right out of high school. Anyone else? Paul George? Tony Parker? I don’t know if Indiana can win if George is their best player. Parker is close – maybe as close as we can get. Lebron, Wade, Harden, Rose, Paul, Durant, are all top of the draft guys and don’t think that GMs don’t know that. The only reason more teams don’t tank is the GM isn’t sure he will be around long enough to reap the benefits.

    • Agreed. Anyone who thinks tanking doesn’t exist hasn’t been following the NBA for very long.

  7. What’s important to me is that we’re not giving out long-term contracts for mega-money (a la Josh Smith or Al Jefferson).
    So we’re not tanking, but we’re not signing away the future, either, at least not so far.
    There hasn’t been anyone out there deserving of a max contract over multiple years (maybe Andre Iguodala came the closest, while Dwight Howard is too much of soap opera for me to deal with). I hope we are really careful in the future about who we reward with an elite deal. Maybe one of our guys will emerge into that stratosphere, like Larry or John or O.J.; maybe one of our draft picks will do so, perhaps even Giannis; maybe one day we’ll even get a free agent like Reggie White was for the Packers — but let’s not rush into anything.
    In the meantime, we can try different guys at different ages and at different talents — with more or less moderate contracts — and see if we can get a good assortment of players for an exciting and upcoming team, and perhaps a star or two in the mix.

    • I agree with your comments about the need for frugality and patience.

      If nothing else we have to feel good that we have a Larry Sanders. Guys like him aren’t that easy to obtain in the NBA and his upside is enormous.

      It remains to be seen but John Henson could be the same type of player as well. So barring catastrophic injury to either of these guys and the Bucks should be competitive for years to come. We need to add a young player with character that can create his own shot and convert with efficiency, and then we will be pretty well set. Milwaukee has always been good at obtaining the role-players.

      Things probably aren’t as gloomy for this franchise as it seems at first glance.

  8. I can’t wait for the first Delfino interview! Big smile on Carlos face and it doesn’t matter that I can NOT understand a word he just said.

    Welcome back Del3no!