Bucks trade for Greivis Vasquez, cause confusion

Shortly before making their first pick in the 2015 NBA draft, the Bucks made news in a rather… unexpected way, acquiring Grievis Vasquez from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for a 2017 first-round pick and the 46th pick tonight.

The first-round pick from the Clippers is lottery-protected in 2017, 2018, and 2019, at which point it turns into a 2020 second-round pick plus the Clippers’ 2021 second-round pick.

While it’s fair to say that many expected movement in tonight’s draft, bringing in another point guard is a curious move. The 28-year-old Vasquez has averaged 9.2 points and 4.9 assists per game in his 5-year career, bouncing between the Memphis Grizzlies, New Orleans Pelicans (then Hornets), Sacramento Kings, and Toronto Raptors. He’s emerged in the last several years as a reliable perimeter threat, shooting 38% on just over 4 three-pointers per game in his previous two seasons. He’s also spent most of his career as a backup, a trend that will likely continue as he joins a Bucks point guard rotation that already features Michael Carter-WilliamsTyler EnnisJerryd Bayless, and Jorge Guitierrez‘s non-guaranteed contract. Vasquez has one year left on a 2 year, $13 million deal and is set to make $6.6 million this season.

I’m not going to lie, this move looks perplexing.

The protection on the Clippers pick combined with their recent success means that that pick would likely not be especially valuable, especially when combined with the non-negligible value of tonight’s second-round pick. Moving a future asset for a point guard–a position that the team was not especially lacking to begin with–is a curious move in the absence of any corresponding action. That said, it’s entirely possible that this is the first in a series of moves as the Bucks continue to retool the team around their young core players. Vasquez will also be an expiring contract this season, meaning that he could be leveraged in a future deal should the team continue to wheel and deal.


Categories: Draft Talk,Ridiculous Things,This Is Apparently Where Things Are Going Now?,Trade Rumors

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  1. It’s good to get a little of Mitch’s personal commentary along with the news story. My hunch is that the Bucksketball staff has a lot to offer in terms of personal opinions regarding the Bucks, if they choose to go more in that direction.

    Don’t know anything about Greivis Vasquez, but I do think it might be good to have several alternatives at point guard. Jerryd played well for the Bucks last season, but isn’t a true point, more of a hybrid. Tyler seemed to be pretty bad, although he’s still young. I like Jorge, but it’s hard to evaluate him because he didn’t play much. MCW is an awesome athlete with the possibility of becoming an NBA star, but I don’t know if he has the leadership and pass-first mindset of a point guard.

    Not surprisingly, I’m still hoping Kendall Marshall comes back to the Bucks with his craftiness and creativity, to go along with seemingly being a great character guy. That would be a big boost for me, in large part because he’s so good at getting the ball moving and bringing the best out of his teammates. It would be interesting to ask the current Bucks about how it is playing with Kendall.

    So lots of possibilities at the point, but lots of question marks, too.

    • Swisch my man! Good to hear from you and I hope to hear more later. Vasquez is a great pick n roll pg who can knock down 3s. He provides floor spacing we need desperately! He can run an offense like Bayless n ennis cannot. The pick from LA is lottery protected so we’d need the Clippers ro miss the playoffs for it to mean anything at all. I seriously dont know how ppl are complaining about this move. Drafting a pg who can kinda shoot vs a vet who is an amazing distributer is a no brainer. Also, wish we traded Henson to a team that’d start the young upstart. I’d follow him on any team the same way I’ll follow my boy B Knight.

      • Thanks, JD414, for the good cheer and the good comments.
        Words like “amazing distributor” to describe Vasquez are music to my ears. Plus, even though I’m big on pass-first points, it’s almost essential for points to be able to knock down outside shots, and even better if they can knock down threes — so that’s another plus for Vasquez.
        Your comments, and others here, are a nice dose of added encouragement for this upcoming season. We need good passers to make the most of guys including Jabari, Giannis, and Khris — and, I hope, John Henson.

      • You don’t understand why people think they gave too much away because you don’t understand what lottery protected means.
        All teams that miss the playoffs, are lottery teams. If the clippers make the playoffs next year, we would have gotten their pick. Say something in the 20-26 range.
        Plus we have away this years second rounder.
        That is way too much for
        A) a guy who can leave in a year and could have been signed for nothing then.
        B) a 6.6mil backup when we just traded Ersan to clear space.

        Could we have taken our second and this pick and traded it to get back into the first round and grab an extra player? Say Portis, who several fans liked, if so then yes this was a bad trade. That asset has way more value than a 6mil one year backup.

        • Most guys selected in the 20-26 range don’t amount to all that much. Context is important in that regard. And the difference between Ersan and Vasquez is that the former was playing in a position that we are stacked at, with players they would like to see get playing time. The only certain player at PG (sadly, if he doesn’t improve) is MCW. Gutierrez is gone, Bayless is not capable of running the offense effectively, and Ennis showed nothing even when healthy to suggest he’ll be any good at the NBA level. Vasquez, meanwhile, has shown his ability to run an offense and shoot the three.

          Again, if he plays well, I don’t see why he wouldn’t stay put in Milwaukee. If he doesn’t, that’s more cap space for next season. And he’s only 28, so it’s not like we traded for an ancient veteran. If the Raptors get someone amazing with the Clips pick next season AND Vasquez plays like garbage, then sure, bash it at that point.

  2. He can certainly be construed as an asset, but the way 1st round picks are valued these days, seems unlikely. They wanted the expiring. 1st round picks get guaranteed dough. Also this guy can start at PG on a competitive team as a distributor, in the event that MCW went down (let’s all please face it — Ennis is a bench player, and might be a decent one, but he’s also super young and could be our new Bayless starting in 2016-17.) Also he can drain 3’s and play the 2 in a pinch. Don’t really love the move, but don’t hate it either, as long as it results in what seems like part of the ‘plan”.

  3. I’m perfectly fine with this move. I’ve noticed people are quick to slam this move because of the first round pick, but the Clippers pick isn’t THAT valuable. Essentially the Bucks are getting another guy to play the point guard position who can keep the offense chugging, something we desperately needed this season.

    Bayless can score, but he was far too inconsistent with his shot and ability to run the offense, particularly after Knight was dealt. And I didn’t see nearly enough from Ennis to make me believe that he’s a part of the future in Milwaukee.

    This move is very low-risk with a potentially high reward. The value of a point guard who can make the game easier for others (see: Jabari, Giannis etc.) cannot be emphasized enough. Whether he’s dishing or giving them a perimeter threat that opens the floor for the Young Bucks, Vasquez could be a major asset next season. If not, his contract expires or we move him to another team looking to get cap relief.

  4. Not confusing at all

    Been critical of Hammond, but today was acceptable. Still more moves to be made, and if not, then want Hammond gone.
    Vaughn was good pick… fits the need of a young capable 1, 2, or 5 to grow with core. Vasquez deal fits the plan of salary dumping by 2016, so we can resign Middleton now, and have room to pay big for Giannis and Parker in the future. While I think Carter-Will sucks (why Philly dumped him), that also was a salary cap move, to provide an alternative to being locked into Knight for multiyears.
    I’m hoping Hammond will move expiring contracts this year – Mayo ($8M), Vasquez ($7M), Pachulia ($5M), Dudley ($4M), Bayless ($3M) – for:
    1) a young defensive C in the mold of Noel or Gobert
    2) make a run this summer (via sign and trade using expiring contracts and picks) for Monroe, DeAndre Jordan, or Gasol.

    We could have kept Ersan to add to the list of expiring contracts, but oh well, no biggie. If none are moved this year, then I see no reason any of them should be back next year. Still waiting for Hammond to fill in the holes at PG and C.

  5. The guy is slow but he is a great pick and roll guy, a few years ago he was one of the best back up pg in the NBA but Casey decided to go into an ISO offense of Lou Williams , Lowry and DeMar and left Vasquez out in the cold trying to play a game he is not able to.
    If you need a floor general type and like to pass the ball he is the guy you want as a backup and as an occasional starter .
    Good pick guys and could also be a good trade bait later..

  6. He is back up point guard with only one year contract. I don’t see any advantage of trading a 2 and future one for him. We should keep that future for trading later on.

    • Because we wouldn’t have had room on the roster for an additional second round pick, and again, the Clippers first rounder was lottery protected, and more likely than not their pick isn’t going to be worth jack by the time it has to be used, basically turning it into two second rounders.

      The Bucks pretty desperately needed a backup who could play valuable minutes behind MCW. It’s scary when you realize that our best play maker most of last season was Zaza Pachulia. Ennis didn’t show anything of note, and Bayless, while a potential dangerous scorer, was only so-so as a distributor and it showed later on in the season. Vasquez can shoot the three to spread the floor, and can run the offense when the Bucks need to play in a half-court set. This can be extremely valuable to the team, particularly the young guys like Giannis and Parker who still need to develop offensively.

      Plus Vasquez is an expiring, meaning it does nothing to us long term, and if he plays well, the Bucks could probably re-sign him on a very reasonable deal.

      • Um we traded for a player but we didn’t have room for a second rounder? Not saying we should have kept it but can you not see some faulty logic there?

        • Yeah, I get what you’re saying lol. But I guess what I meant to say is that we’re better served having a guy like Vasquez on the roster over a second rounder which likely won’t justify having a roster spot.

      • I don’t have any problem with trading for him to be a back up point. I think we paid too much for him. I would like to keep the future first as an asset to help for trading later on. Vasquez is already swicthing four teams in six years. He isn’t worth an 1 and 2. After one year, he will move to a different team.

        • But adversely, teams traded for him because he was a valuable asset and the team trading him away just got something that benefited them a little more.

          We really didn’t give away anything of real value. Again, that first pick was protected to the point that it more than likely will never be that valuable to the Bucks, even for other trades. A second round pick has that same issue.

          The Bucks aren’t asking Vasquez to start or play major minutes, but they DO need a guy who can facilitate (which he has proven he can do) and shoot the three (again, a solid three point shooter). He could end up being an amazing fit on this team. And if he does leave for another team in free agency, then we just clear up more cap room and have even more possibilities the following year in free agency.

  7. We’re talking about a guy who led the league in assists in 2012. Clearly he knows how to run an offense. Idk ab I ur u guys but I saw Bayless n ennis struggle with facilitating the 2nd team. What am I missing? We lost a crazy protected 1st rounder from LA. Boo hoo u think they’ll miss the playoffs any time soon. I like this trade a lot

    • Actually the Clippers missing the playoffs would have been bad for the pick not good

    • The guy got traded four time in six years. If he is a good point guard, he shouldn’t be traded that many time. Sometime, stats are misled to tell how good a player is.

  8. I don’t really have a problem with the trade as Vasquez is an ideal addition to this team’s overall guards; though, I would have figured that we could have swung it without including this year’s 2nd round pick which I had hoped could have been used on someone like Satnam Singh or Arturas Gudaitis.

    I’m still hoping that John Hammond can manage to trade Zaza Pachulia for Spencer Hawes in order to add a proven front court floor spacer and someone who can fill the facilitator role that Pachulia provides us for a big man. Then make an offer for either RFA Bismack Biyombo or RFA Kyle O’Quinn to replace that big banger defensive presence on the inside as either one of these two should be able to do that and more given their good rim protection capabilities. The addition of either Biyombo or O’Quinn would however require the Bucks to either move Bayless, Dudley, or maybe O’Bryant.

  9. I see it as a good, solid move for the Bucks. An obvious upgrade at point and maybe light a fire under MCW to improve. Plus Vasquez can SHOOT! Hurrah.

    Most of all it’s a statement about the poor back up point play of last year. Ennis showed little even when healthy. He needs a year or two to show he belongs. Gutterez is a d league guy and Bayless is not really a point.

    The Clips #1 while Griffin and Paul are there will always be approx. #25 every year. Hit or miss at that spot most years.

    More importantly, can Vaughn contribute this year?

    • I think he’ll have his opportunities throughout the season to contribute simply because he has proven he’s a good shooter and this team needs good shooters; this is not to suggest he will be depended on as a key contributor this year — highly unlikely unless OJ.Mayo gets traded or gets injured and something happens to Vasquez too.

      As I’m seeing it right now Gutierrez is as good as gone; therefore the roster currently is breaking down like this…

      PG: MCW/Vasquez, Bayless, Ennis
      SG: Middleton, Mayo, Vasquez/Vaughn, Bayless, Inglis
      SF: Antetokounmpo, Middleton, Dudley, Inglis, Parker
      PF: Parker, Antetokounmpo, Dudley, O’Bryant/Inglis, Middleton, Henson
      C: Henson, Pachulia, Plumlee, O’Bryant

      …which is not bad if Plumlee and Henson demonstrate that they’re ready to fully supplant Pachulia at the Center position and Antetokounmpo can provide floor spacing; however, what I’d like to see is this…

      PG: MCW/Vasquez, Bayless, Ennis
      SG: Middleton, Mayo, Vasquez/Vaughn, Bayless/Inglis
      SF: Antetokounmpo, Middleton/Parker, Inglis
      PF: Parker, Hawes, Antetokounmpo, O’Bryant/Inglis, Henson
      C: O’Quinn or Biyombo, Henson, Plumlee, Hawes, O’Bryant

      …this would require dealing Zaza Pachulia for Spencer Hawes, move Dudley (or it could also be Bayless or maybe O’Bryant if the team doesn’t think he can develop into an NBA player) for a roster space, and sign either Kyle O’Quinn or Bismack Biyombo. Of course it also means that the Bucks resign Khris Middleton. I like this better because it provides us with a big PF (Hawes) who can stretch the floor, protect the rim, and facilitate to slashers; plus, it allows the Bucks to slide Parker over to SF on occasion, or at least more often, for potential match-up purposes. It also allows the team to add more capable young rebounders who can protect the rim and one who should be able to absorb a lot of banging around too. Only concern is that with obtaining Biyombo verses O’Quinn you have a pretty major FT% issue with him, but Biyombo is the younger (only 22yo) and I’d argue better rim protector.

      • I should have listed the Center position like this: O’Quinn or Biyombo/Henson/Plumlee/Hawes, O’Bryant. I changed it like this because any one of those four players (O’Quinn or Biyombo, Henson, Plumlee, and Hawes) should be capable of handling fairly similar minutes at the position and ideally would be on a rotation in order to keep them fresh; only O’Bryant isn’t an ideal candidate to receive playing time at Center.