There is no denying that John Wall was an elite athlete while he was healthy. The former number 1 overall pick in the 2010 draft is currently 31 years old and a member of the Houston Rockets. Since 2018, Wall has played in 40 games but hasn’t appeared in a game since April 21st, 2021. John Wall recently informed the Rockets that he would like to return to the active roster however, he doesn’t fit into their long term plans. Wall is currently making 44.3 million which makes him difficult to move via trade so the Rockets may look to buy out Wall’s contract. If that happens, could the Bucks look to add an elite playmaker to their bench?
How does the buyout work?
There are generally three reasons that a buyout happens. First off, a team takes on a player in a trade that doesn’t factor into the plans for the team. Second, a team acquired a veteran player and that player performs below expectations. Lastly, a player wants out of a situation for a multitude of reasons. John Wall fits into the last scenario.
When a player and a team mutually agree to part ways, the player will be waived. Waivers are a 48 hour period where teams can bid on a players contract. The team placing a winning bid must be able to fit the contract of a player on it’s payroll or an unused salary-cap exception. John Wall would be a tricky waiver claim not to mention a risky investment given his track record with injuries. He would likely clear waivers and be eligible to sign with any team he wants.
John Wall’s agent and Houston ownership would have to negotiate a buyout number which can be a difficult process. In Wall’s case, he should be flexible given how little he’s played over the last three seasons. If Wall lands in an situation where he can be successful, he may be able to land another contract but not of the figure of his last.
Does John Wall make sense for the Bucks?
Milwaukee won’t have much to offer Wall in terms of money, however, he if he did reach a buyout, he won’t need it. What Milwaukee can offer John Wall is a chance to win a championship. At this point in his career, Wall wants nothing more than to compete for a championship. Look at the Brooklyn Nets last season. They brought on several veteran players who had hopes of a title run. This situation would be different. None of the players who joined the Nets have the type of impact on the game like John Wall can. In addition to a possible championship, Wall would have an opportunity to showcase that he’s still an elite playmaker and worthy of a roster spot on an NBA team.
The Bucks bench was said to be “deep” but in 37 games this season they average 28.5 points while the opponents bench averages 38.5 points per game. Another glaring statistic is the number of assists the Bucks bench musters each game. The Bucks bench averages 5.1 assists per game while our opponents average 8.3. Milwaukee’s bench lacks a backup who can create shot for themselves, but more importantly, for others. Over John Wall’s career he’s average 19.1 points, 4.3 rebounds, 9.1 assists and 1.7 steals. His abilities allow him to work with several different lineups Milwaukee puts on the floor. He can be the primary scorer with the second unit or he can get open shots for our knock down jump shooters. If the relationship is something both parties want, I see no reason why John Wall wouldn’t be a good addition to the Bucks.
Boogie the Recruiter
DeMarcus Cousins signed a non-guarantee contract in late November allowing the Bucks to assess hit fit with the team. Milwaukee needs to make a decision on Cousins’ contract by January 7th where they can waive him with no financial obligation. Cousins has played well in a handful of games for the Bucks Given the uncertainty of Brook Lopez’s back injury, I feel Milwaukee will keep Cousins on the for rest of the season.
John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins played together at Kentucky in 2010 and were both drafted after one year. NBA players often get along with teammates they had in college and would relish at the opportunity to team up at the NBA level. Could Cousins being in Milwaukee help ownership recruit Wall to the Bucks? After all, Boogie did jus say he loves being in Milwaukee.
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