Consider this series a guide to watching your Bucks exes. But you won’t be watching for pleasure. It’ll be pure scorn in your heart as you tune into the Pistons or Mavericks or any other team with a former Buck. It will be … Hate Watching.
Why Do You Hate Him:
Bad shots. Bad fit. Bad planning. Bad intentions.
The acquisition of Monta Ellis perfectly blended Milwakee’s insistence on acquiring second rate stars with its desire to do everything it could to obtain a meaningless playoff spot. In Monta’s first half season, they failed. In his only full season, Milwaukee succeeded and received one of the worst playoff beat downs of all time. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!
My distaste for basketball player Monta Ellis is not some sort of revisionist history either. Here’s what I said earlier on ESPN.com the day Monta Ellis was traded for:
He’s kind of like an inverse Bogut. If a team is solid defensively but needs a little more punch offensively, he could help out. But his pay is crazy for a guy who should be a sixth man and we’re seeing really good teams shift away from guys who dominate the ball and can’t shoot 3s.
He spent the next year and a half being paid way too much, starting, dominating the ball and missing threes. What. A. Nightmare.
Was He Replaced?
The Milwaukee version of Ellis played a poisonous brand of basketball that could never be replicated or replaced. So, strictly in terms of what Ellis did, no, he hasn’t been replaced. But the Bucks have a whole new rotation of point guards and shooting guards. Brandon Knight, the replacement for Brandon Jennings, may end up being more like Ellis than Jennings as his career goes on.
Ellis actually was able to find teammates with more ease and frequency than Knight through Knight’s first 20 games with the Bucks. The absence of an Ellis-like guard has been most evident in the poor play of Ersan Ilyasova, who now lacks a competent pick-and-pop partner who can help him get free for open three pointers at the top of the key.
How’s He Doing:
Unbelievably well. He’s attempting more free throws and making them at a higher percentage than he ever did in Milwaukee. He’s cut back on threes and he’s among the league’s leaders in drives per game. His assist numbers are a bit lower than they were in Milwaukee, but in line with his career before Milwaukee.
Oh, and he’s stopped being a 41% shooter. He’s up to 47% through 23 games. He’s functioned very well as a clear number two behind Dirk Nowitzki.
His play this season actually makes it easier to hate watch him. When I tuned in to a Mavericks game earlier this season and saw Ellis slashing to the rim, connecting for layups and drawing free throws, I ended up laughing like a maniac, wondering where that was last season. Sure, it was a bad team and a bad situation, but why didn’t he realize he was a big part of the bad situation and change his game? Why could no one get through to him?
Has He Slandered The Great City of Milwaukee:
“When you’re in a place where you’re unhappy, it’s very hard for you to perform to your best ability,” said Ellis, the American Airlines Center lights twinkling off the oversized diamond studs in each ear. “So, I mean, with this new beginning, new fresh start, you know, better organization, you know, better teammates, they’re going to make things a lot more better.”
Monta was on the Bucks, but he never really felt like part of the city. Even Stephen Jackson faked it pretty hard for a while. Monta showed up and did his job, he didn’t half ass it, but by his own admission, it was hard for him to perform to the best of his ability. Fun for those in the crowd.
So no, he didn’t slander our city, but he played terrible basketball for a year and a half here and slammed the organization on his way out. Fun times!
This Is Annoying:
As if I could put anything else here.
Nationally Televised Games:
- December 14, vs. Milwaukee – NBATV
- January 5, vs. New York – NBATV
- January 8, at San Antonio – ESPN
- February 9, at Boston – NBATV
- February 24, at New York – NBATV
- February 26, vs. New Orleans – ESPN
- March 25, vs. Oklahoma City – TNT
- April 3, at Los Angeles – TNT
- April 10, vs. San Antonio – TNT
Safe to say, you’ll have plenty of opportunities the rest of this year to hate watch Monta Ellis.
When Can You Boo Him:
If you weren’t there on November 9, you already missed your chance. But don’t fret, he received plenty of boos.