This has been a fairly quiet trade deadline. It’s possible (likely) that there’s very little interest in players who play for the NBA-worst Milwaukee Bucks. Veterans like Gary Neal and Luke Ridnour sound like they are drawing some interest, but they aren’t really needle movers in the league. They’ll be had for a price that is small.
Of greater interest league wide could be roller coaster forward Ersan Ilyasova who has expressed some dissatisfaction with the team’s poor play and his ever changing role on the team.
But if BasketballInsiders.com’s Alex Kennedy is to be believed, Ilyasova will be staying put in Milwaukee. Not necessarily because basketball people within the organization think he should be apart of the rebuilding project taking place, but because the Bucks owner has a soft spot for him:
Milwaukee’s asking price on Ilyasova has been incredibly high, and sources say it’s because owner Herb Kohl is a huge fan of Ilyasova and believes that he can be a star player in the NBA.
Rumors are rumors, so obviously we don’t know this to be totally accurate. This does have the slight whiff of an agent desperately trying to get his client out of a situation he’s unhappy in. But I’ll give Alex Kennedy some credit, because he has a fairly solid history of reporting and Kohl has a reputation of ruining basketball in the city of Milwaukee.
Ilyasova theoretically has hurt his value this season with one poor performance after the next and an absence of his typical post January improvements. But he has enough of a history as a shooter and passable to good rebounder that it’s hard to believe he has no value elsewhere. He certainly has next to no value on the Bucks, because he’s ideally a role player and will never be a crucially important part of a highly successful basketball team. On the right team though, he could use his strengths as a shooter and charge taker to swing quarters and fill minutes until very good players take over.
So surely there is some team willing to give up something of some value for him, especially with an apparent lack of prime players available to be had via trade as this deadline approaches.
But it sounds like Ilyasova will stay in Milwaukee, thanks to the delusions of the owner of his team. He’ll remain unhappy, he’ll still cut into the playing time of younger players and he’ll keep doing nothing to move the needle either way for a team that will never head anywhere so long as the owner continues to muck up the basketball operations.
Attention rich people worldwide who can deal with the city of Milwaukee: THE BAR TO OWN A TEAM HERE IS PRETTY LOW. All you have to do is not move them and stay away. Do those things and you’ll be hailed as a hero.
The current owner just makes everyone sad.