The Milwaukee Bucks have been one of the more active teams before the NBA trade deadline on March 25th. Recently, the Bucks traded for PJ Tucker, the Houston Rockets veteran swingman known for hitting threes and playing great defense. In a small ball lineup, Tucker can also play center. The Bucks are also acquiring forward Rodions Kurucs, and traded the Rockets the two D.Js (Augustin and Wilson).
The Bucks are also trading Torrey Craig to the Phoenix Suns; however, it is debatable whether this is actually a trade. The Bucks are not receiving anything in return as they can’t get a player of his contract and role in return. Craig was not given the minutes he deserved on the Bucks, so it’s mutually beneficial that he gets a chance somewhere else.
Acquiring PJ Tucker most importantly will help the Bucks’ title push. Tucker can hit threes which isn’t the Bucks main focus, as their superstar is 6’11” Giannis Antetokounmpo. Acquiring more scoring threats like Tucker will certainly help their chances at a deep playoff push, as well as more evenly distribute scoring. The Rockets, on the other hand, gain a decent backup point guard who can play with stars (Augustin played with Kevin Durant at the University of Texas) and a solid, young, athletic power forward. Tucker will get his first chance to show what he can do later today when the Milwaukee Bucks take on the San Antonio Spurs.
In other news, the Miami Heat have agreed to trade Meyers Leonard to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Trevor Ariza. Sam Presti, being Sam Presti, did what any fan of the NBA would expect; he acquired a draft pick from the trade. It was a 2027 second-round pick, but it was a draft pick nonetheless. As of the writing of this blog, Sam Presti has 17 FIRST ROUND PICKS and 15 SECOND ROUND PICKS through the 2027 NBA Draft!
Ariza brings scoring to the table and is a veteran sharpshooter, who has played with the best (Kobe’s lakers in ’09 and ’10) and some of the worst teams (’05 Knicks, ’19 Wizards, ’20 Kings). Ariza has averaged 10.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 2.2 assists while shooting 35% from three for his career. This season, he has only played one game so far, and he opted out of the 2020 NBA bubble for family considerations while on the Trail Blazers.
Meyers Leonard, on the other hand, is a big man who has been averaging about three points and two rebounds for the Miami Heat. He has gotten himself into deep trouble, as he has been fined $50,000 for an anti-Semitic slur which occurred while he was streaming video games. Leonard had season-ending surgery in February on his shoulder, and it’s expected that the Thunder will keep his contract and not trade it before the deadline. It’s no wonder a draft pick had to be given to Sam Presti to seal the deal.
While neither of these moves seem huge, they could provide some depth for different teams who require these players’ skills. They’re bound to be more deals on the way before the trade deadline in five days, so don’t forget to follow the blog so you don’t miss out on a single trade. And as always, have an awesome day!