The stress on the Milwaukee Bucks group been cranked up significantly after an early playoff exit. They’re now two years faraway from successful a championship and have solely gained one playoff collection since. As we defined when the Bucks practically misplaced Brook Lopez in free company, the Bucks’ window could possibly be closing sooner than we expect. The highest starters round Giannis Antetokounmpo are all of their early-to-mid 30s and the group is proscribed in belongings to considerably enhance the roster round him.
Antetokounmpo appears effectively conscious of all these components after making a collection of feedback this offseason relating to his future, beginning with not planning on extending with the Bucks this offseason. He’s extension-eligible from September 22 via the day earlier than the beginning of the common season, however can solely add as much as three years by extending now. Even when he plans on getting a brand new take care of Milwaukee, it makes extra sense to do it subsequent season when he can add as much as 4 years.
Antetokounmpo additional fueled hypothesis earlier this week on his future when he mentioned that he could be open to higher alternatives to win a championship outdoors of Milwaukee. Whether or not Antetokounmpo actually has a wandering eye or not, he’s lastly beginning to apply stress on the Bucks’ group. His contract state of affairs with just one yr left earlier than he can choose out and turn into a free agent in 2025 ought to give Milwaukee a powerful sense of urgency.
Though the Bucks nonetheless have time to make issues work, the remainder of the league is maintaining a tally of the state of affairs. ESPN’s Zach Lowe just lately mentioned Antetokoumpo’s feedback with Ramona Shelburne and believes the Bucks really may commerce Antetokounmpo as an alternative of enjoying issues out via his free company. Lowe additionally added that groups are in all probability holding onto their belongings in anticipation of a commerce request.
They went on to record groups they may see finally getting within the combine for Antetokounmpo in a commerce. Beneath is a rating of these groups primarily based on how sensible their likelihood is of efficiently buying him.
The Miami Warmth have been linked to Antetokounmpo as a possible vacation spot ought to he have made it to free company. As of now, there’s momentum for them to accumulate Damian Lillard from the Portland Path Blazers. In the event that they efficiently purchase him, they gained’t have sufficient belongings to make an acceptable commerce supply for Antetokounmpo.
The Los Angeles Lakers are brief on commerce belongings in the mean time since they owe two first-round picks to different groups. Additionally they don’t have any gamers with substantial commerce worth outdoors of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Austin Reaves. The Lakers’ strongest level of leverage could be their capacity to signal Antetokounmpo outright in 2025 free company if James is now not with the group by then. If Antetokounmpo indicators a want to hitch the Lakers as a free agent, that would inspire the Bucks the preemptively commerce him there.
The Magic have a number of gifted younger gamers to supply and sufficient gamers on brief contracts to provide the Bucks fast cap flexibility. Additionally they have all of their very own first-round picks, permitting them to supply a most of 4. Nonetheless, would they be prepared to commerce one in every of Paolo Banchero or Franz Wagner? The inclusion of no less than a type of gamers could also be wanted to inspire the Bucks to maneuver him there.
The Golden State Warriors have had reported curiosity in Antetokounmpo way back to 2019 once they nonetheless had Kevin Durant. Their solely option to pair him with Stephen Curry is thru a commerce since they don’t undertaking to have cap house anytime quickly. The Warriors can supply a mixture of Andrew Wiggins, Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody, and first-round picks in 2026 and 2028, and choose swaps in between. They might additionally supply Klay Thompson or Draymond Inexperienced, however the Warriors might desire to maintain them in Golden State till the top of their careers.
The Toronto Raptors have been linked to Antetokounmpo as a possible 2021 free company vacation spot previous to extending with the Bucks. They’ve all however one in every of their very own first-round picks over the following seven drafts. Additionally they have a number of nice starters like Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby who could possibly be helpful for Milwaukee or be rerouted for different belongings. Additionally they have Scottie Barnes however they might desire to pair him with Antetokounmpo if doable.
The Brooklyn Nets have a surplus of 9 first-round picks over the following seven drafts, most of which might function the muse of an Antetokounmpo supply. The Nets are motivated to compete now since they owe a number of unprotected first-round picks to the Rockets, so that they could possibly be trying to money in on most of these now for star energy. As talked about by Lowe, the problem with the Nets as a vacation spot is that they might not have a lot left round Antetokounmpo in the event that they purchase him, particularly in the event that they should commerce Mikal Bridges to get it completed.
The New Orleans Pelicans ranked fourth in HoopsHype’s commerce asset rankings with their surplus of first-round picks and promising younger expertise. They’ve probably the greatest particular person gamers to supply in Zion Williamson who, if wholesome, would give the Bucks a substitute star to look ahead to. As talked about on the Lowe Put up, in addition they personal the Bucks’ 2027 first-round choose and choose swaps in 2024 and 2026. Getting management of their very own draft could be helpful for the Bucks so they may doubtlessly backside out for a excessive lottery choose.
The Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder ranked first in HoopsHype’s commerce asset rankings for a second consecutive yr. They’ve sufficient picks and gifted younger guys not solely to accumulate a participant like Antetokounmpo however doubtlessly a second elite famous person as effectively. If he’s open to enjoying in Oklahoma Metropolis, they might be capable of construct a powerful contending roster round him, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and their younger group.
The New York Knicks have been holding onto their belongings in anticipation for a star commerce. They’ll commerce as much as eight first-round picks, which embody 4 of their very own and 4 owned by different groups. As talked about within the Lowe Put up, a type of is the Bucks’ 2025 first-round choose. Together with draft fairness, the Knicks even have a number of gifted younger gamers they may supply corresponding to RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, and Quentin Grimes. They might additionally supply All-Star Julius Randle or reroute him to a 3rd group to deliver extra belongings to Milwaukee.