The NBA trade deadline has come and gone, and the only move the Milwaukee Bucks made was to get Patrick Beverley from the Philadelphia 76ers. But thanks to the deadline, the front office might have to let Bobby Portis and Pat Connaughton go due to the upcoming 2024-25 salary cap.
Of the two, Portis is the more productive player for the Bucks. In his four seasons playing for Milwaukee, the 6’10” big man averaged 13.2 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 1.2 assists. Unlike his previous stints for the Chicago Bulls, New York Knicks, and Washington Wizards, Portis achieved career-high stats in points and rebounds as a Buck.
On the other hand, Connaughton has had a lesser role, either as a backup small forward or shooting guard, throughout the past few years. Since he joined the Bucks in 2018, his averages in Milwaukee have amounted to 7.1 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game.
Milwaukee Bucks Projected to Move Bobby Portis and Pat Connaughton to Reach 2024-25 Salary Cap
As it stands, the Bucks might need to part with these two players before next season rolls around. In an article written by Danny Leroux for The Athletic:
“It looks as if the Bucks will be over the second apron even if they only add minimum salaries this summer, so the only way to open up any spending power would be by moving existing salary like Bobby Portis and Pat Connaughton,” Leroux wrote.
Connaughton still has two years left on his current contract, amounting to $18.8 million. Meanwhile, Portis also has two years left on his contract worth $26 million. Doing so will help the Bucks avoid the second apron when the 2024-25 season starts.
If Milwaukee goes over the second apron by exceeding a total salary of $182.5 million, they will lose access to the $5 million taxpayer midlevel exception, along with all the penalties imposed on the first apron.
Letting both Portis and Connaughton go seems the likely course of action, especially if Milwaukee wants to keep the All-Star duo of Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard next season. If that happens, though, fans will be sad to see two favorites part ways with the Bucks.
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