The Milwaukee Bucks have acquired a lottery-protected 2017 first-round pick from the Los Angeles Clippers. The full swap details from the team’s press release:
The Milwaukee Bucks have acquired forward Jared Dudley and a 2017 conditional first round draft pick from the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for forward Carlos Delfino, center Miroslav Raduljica and a 2015 second round draft pick (previously received from the L.A. Clippers), General Manager John Hammond announced today.
Dudley had a disappointing season in 2013-14, as he averaged just 6.9 points per game while seeing his playing time shrunk in favor of players like Danny Granger. He has two seasons and $8.5 million remaining on his contract, though he has an early termination option on his contract after next season. The Bucks may still use him in a prominent role given that he is 1) still younger than 30 years old, 2) a good-shooting wing, and 3) a generally well-regarded veteran in NBA circles.
Or maybe not. If they don’t feed him playing time, I’m sure he would be further enticed to use that option and spare the Bucks the financial commitment. And for what it’s worth, Dudley may not be terribly fond of Milwaukee. He once took a verbal swipe at the Bucks, when talking about Steve Nash’s trade to the Lakers. (h/t: Paul Henning).
“I was happy because you always want to have Steve to have a chance to win. [Los Angeles is] close to Phoenix, and if you’re going to leave a franchise where you have that emotion, you want to go to a big-time franchise. If he had gone to the Knicks, I would have been happy. That’s the thing for me, I don’t want to s— on a team, but I didn’t want to go to Milwaukee. You want to go to a team that has history and prestige, and L.A. was a perfect fit.”
Given that Dudley made those comments before the Bucks stumbled to a 15-win season, he may end up just looking for the quickest and nearest exit.
With Dudley’s utility on the downswing and Delfino still recuperating from a foot injury suffered as a Houston Rocket way back in the 2013 playoffs, the most useful player in the deal may turn out to be Raduljica. He is currently faring quite well while getting lots of playing time in international play with Serbia. He will never be a world beater, but he is huge mass of a man who can shoot, pass and rebound, three excellent NBA player traits.
By making a 2-for-1 player swap, the Clippers pushed themselves to the NBA roster minimum of 13 players while dipping ever so slightly below the NBA’s luxury tax threshold. Conversely, the Bucks downsized their roster to 16 players, leaving themselves just one player over the maximum roster size.
Oddly, this trade marks the second time this summer that the Bucks returned a second-round pick to another team via trade. The Bucks had the future rights to a protected second-round pick from the J.J. Redick trade that they will now reportedly give back. They earlier gave back a second-rounder to the Nets as a result of the Jason Kidd hiring.
All-in-all, though, it’s a good day for the Bucks. They secured a first-round pick for next to nothing.