It was a massive risk, no doubt, but at least one particular NBA analyst believes that this was a gamble worth taking for the Bucks.
Milwaukee Bucks Strike Gold With Damian Lillard
Bleacher Report’s Greg Swartz took an in-depth look at the big moves that went down around the NBA this summer as he broke down why the said trades would either backfire or pay off for the respective teams involved. Milwaukee fans will be glad to know that the analyst believes that the Bucks will reap the rewards of their boldness.
According to Swartz, this deal “gives (Giannis) Antetokounmpo the most talented player he’s ever shared the floor with.” There’s just no debating that fact. This is by no means a knock on any of Antetokounmpo’s former and current teammates but rather, a testament to just how great Lillard is.
Swartz also points out that the Bucks needed to make a significant move after Giannis’ comments about leaving Milwaukee if he doesn’t win a championship in the near future. The front office could not have responded in a better way than by bringing in a generational talent that instantly propels this team as one of the heavy favorites to win it all in 2023-24.
The Jrue Holiday Factor
The Bucks had to give up Jrue Holiday in order to get their hands on Lillard, which is an undeniably tough blow. Nevertheless, it was a necessary sacrifice for Milwaukee. What’s also worth noting is the fact that Holiday is also on an expiring contract.
“Losing Holiday is tough, but it also offers the franchise far more security that Antetokounmpo will sign an extension and that the starting point guard will stick around as well (Holiday can become a free agent in 2024, Lillard is under contract until 2027),” Swartz wrote.
All in all, Swartz believes that the Giannis-Lillard pairing “should now be viewed as the best duo in all of the NBA.” Not only does Swartz believe that this all-in trade will pay off for the Bucks, but perhaps more importantly, it should provide Antetokounmpo with more motivation to sign an extension with the team.
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