Bucks complete MCW trade, acquire Snell

MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee Bucks General Manager John Hammond announced Monday that the team has acquired fourth-year guard Tony Snell from the Chicago Bulls in exchange for fourth-year guard Michael Carter-Williams.

In three games to date during the 2016 preseason, Snell, 24, has averaged 9.7 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.0 steals in 16.0 minutes. He appeared in 64 games (33 starts) for the Bulls last season and averaged 5.3 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 20.3 minutes per contest. The 20th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft out of the University of New Mexico, Snell has played in 213 career games (67 starts) for the Bulls, and averaged 5.3 points, 2.3 rebounds and 0.9 assists. In his last two seasons, Snell has shot 37.1 percent (2014-15) and 36.1 percent (2015-16) from the three-point arc.

Carter-Williams, 25, appeared in 54 games (37 starts) for the Bucks last season and averaged 11.5 points, 5.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds in 30.5 minutes per game. Originally drafted by Philadelphia in the 2013 NBA Draft (11th overall) out of Syracuse, he was acquired by Milwaukee in a trade on Feb. 19, 2015, and has appeared in 190 career games with the 76ers and Bucks.

(Bucks.com)

Bucks sending MCW to Bulls for Tony Snell

MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks and Chicago Bulls have agreed to a trade that would send Michael Carter-Williams to the Bulls and Tony Snell to Milwaukee.

The transaction hasn’t been made official, but paperwork is expected to be completed on Monday, reports Charles Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The move would end a cycle of poor play from Carter-Williams since coming to Milwaukee in a three-way trade during the 2014-15 season. He’s shot just 22.9 percent from beyond the arc in his time with the Bucks. After sending Tyler Ennis to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Michael Beasley, Miles Plumlee is the only remaining piece of the 76ers and Suns trade.

After losing Khris Middleton for at least six months due to a torn hamstring, the Bucks were looking for additional shooting, which MCW wasn’t providing.

Tony Snell is a career 35.1 percent three-point shooter, converting on 39.6 percent of his shots from the field. Snell would have likely seen his playing time diminish greatly this year with the Bulls adding Dwyane Wade to a mix including Jimmy Butler and Doug McDermott.

Parker powers Bucks past Mavs 88-74

MADISON, Wis. — The Dallas Mavericks were without Dirk Nowitzki and Devin Harris, so Milwaukee Bucks forward Jabari Parker took advantage with 21 points in an 88-74 preseason victory at the Kohl Center in Madison Saturday night.

Parker led the game in scoring, adding six rebounds and a number of dunks in his effort. Next in scoring for Milwaukee was Greg Monroe, who was seen by many as a trade piece this offseason. He converted on all four of his free throw attempts and created four Mavericks turnovers.

“[Parker is] a very talented scorer,” Bucks coach Jason Kidd said after the win. “When he gets out on the break, he’s as good as anyone at finishing and he showed that tonight. I thought he let the game come to him, he didn’t force anything.”

The Bucks didn’t get much from Michael Carter-Williams, however, following reports the Sacramento Kings had nixed a trade in exchange for Ben McLemore. MCW tallied just three points on 1-for-8 shooting in 22 minutes of action. He also generated just one assist.

Rookie Thon Maker made his preseason debut following a wrist injury to log nine points and four rebounds on 3-of-6 shooting. Maker recalled making his first shot following the game.

 

The Mavericks were paced by Dwight Powell’s 15 points, converting on 6-of-8 from the floor.

MCW responds to trade news: “Just tune in”

MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks have been trying to quietly shop Greg Monroe and Michael Carter-Williams since last season and their most recent attempt to trade MCW was turned down by the Sacramento Kings.

Despite being one of the teams in most dire need of a point guard, the Kings reportedly turned down a trade offer for Carter-Williams in which they would have given up Ben McLemore.

McLemore is a career 41 percent shooter from the field through his three NBA seasons, but could have added a much-needed deep threat after the injury to Khris Middleton. McLemore has converted on 34.6 percent of his career three-point shots.

Carter-Williams appeared to respond to the news Friday afternoon, posting the following Tweet:

The Milwaukee Bucks host the Dallas Mavericks Saturday night at 7:30 at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wis.

Monroe leads Bucks to preseason win over Bulls

CHICAGO — The Milwaukee Bucks got 15 points from backup center Greg Monroe in a 93-91 preseason win over the Chicago Bulls Monday night.

Monroe led all scorers in the game, despite playing 17 minutes off the bench. It wasn’t  a new role for Monroe, who was relived of his duties as a full-time starter in the last half of the 2015-16 season. There had been rumors all offseason that Monroe could potentially be traded after the Bucks regressed from their surprise 41-41 season in 2014-15.

Michael Carter-Williams was also involved in some trade rumors, but played like the former Rookie of the Year coach Jason Kidd traded for during the playoff run two years ago. He was one of just two players in last night’s game to record a double double, finishing with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Taj Gibson was the other, giving Chicago 11 points and 12 rebounds.

The Bulls eased newcomer Dwyane Wade into game action, limiting him to 12 minutes where he added six points and recorded two steals. Milwaukee was one of many teams to pursue Wade in the offseason, hoping they could bring the 12-time All Star back to where he played his college days at Marquette University.

The Bucks are fresh off a week of training camp held at the University of Wisconsin campus in Madison and return to the state capital on Saturday night for the next preseason game against the Dallas Mavericks at 7:30 p.m.

Report: Bucks could deal Monroe, MCW

MILWAUKEE — The injury to Khris Middleton has made the Bucks’ shooting woes an even bigger priority and league officials claim Milwaukee is looking to deal Greg Monroe and/or Michael Carter-Williams.

Middleton was easily Milwaukee’s best shooter in 2015 at a clip of 39.6 percent. The Racine Journal TImes now reports Charlotte’s Jeremy Lamb may be a trade target, with Milwaukee shipping Monroe over to the Hornets. It’s far from a done deal, but Milwaukee could use Lamb’s 44 percent field goal percentage from a season ago, along with his 8.8 points off the bench.

In addition, the Bucks would receive Spencer Hawes in that deal. A replacement for Monroe, Hawes brings a 7-foot-1 body to the fold, as well as a career 8.9 points per game and an NBA pedigree. He’s the nephew of retired Hawks center Steve Hawes.

Last week, the Bucks said their plan was to use a timeshare to fill the void left by the Middleton injury. Coach Jason Kidd added that the initial plan is to use Monroe and MCW off the bench this upcoming season, but that their roles are not set in stone and will be further assessed after the preseason.

Monroe: playing off the bench is “news to me”

MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee Bucks coach Jason Kidd told reporters on Monday that his preliminary plan was to use Michael Carter-Williams and Greg Monroe off the bench, but Monroe said he was unaware of that arrangement.

 

Monroe handled the news like a professional, saying he’ll simply wait for his number to be called and he’ll be ready to contribute. But it had to have shocked the New Orleans native after turning down multiple job offers in free agency last summer to be a full-time player in Milwaukee.

However unsettling the decision is for Monroe and Carter-Williams, Kidd left the door open for that decision to change after this week’s training camp in Madison.

“We’ll probably start off with looking at the second half of the season with looking at Michael and Greg coming off the bench,” Kidd said. “We won’t make that decision until later in the week. We’ll go through training camp, we’ll have them start, we’ll have them come off the bench, we’re going to look at a lot of different combinations. I think we liked the way that it ended last year with Miles [Plumlee] starting. It gave us some firepower off the bench and made us deeper.”

Milwaukee holds its first preseason game in Chicago Oct. 3 against the Bulls.

Feigin: “Little traction” to Westbrook trade

MADISON, Wis. — Speaking exclusively with The Wisconsin Sports Zone Network Sunday morning, Milwaukee Bucks president Peter Feigin said an offer was made to Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook, but that it never gained much traction.

Milwaukee’s current point guard, Michael Cater-Williams, averaged 11.5 points per game in 2015, down about five points per contest (16.7) from his rookie season with the Philadelphia 76ers. His assist numbers were down as well, from 6.3 per game to 5.2. His ineffectiveness to combine assists with shooting in the 2015-16 campaign led to discussion MCW would be traded, only to have rumors fly that he wouldn’t be leaving Milwaukee.

The Bucks have since explored other options at point guard, namely Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, a five-time All-Star with the Thunder. At 27 years old, Westbrook led the NBA last season with 18 triple doubles. Feigin says Milwaukee discussed the possibility of bringing Westbrook in, but the discussions never turned into a contract offer.

“When [a potential trade] becomes very substantial and real, we circle up the business side, the ownership side, and the basketball side and all give it a quick, hard thought. It didn’t get to that level, so I think the Westbrook rumors were…the second [Kevin] Durant left, you were going to get Westrbook rumors.”

Kevin Durant left Oklahoma City for Golden State, signing a two-year contract worth $54.3 million with a player option after the first season.

Feigin wouldn’t say what Milwaukee’s initial offer was to acquire Westbrook, but early reports suggest it may have been Jabari Parker and/or Khris Middleton.

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Report: Bucks looking to shop Monroe

MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks might be looking for Greg Monroe’s replacement in Thursday’s NBA Draft after reports on Monday stated the team’s intention to ship Monroe out of Milwaukee.

After missing the 2015-16 playoffs in the first year post-Monroe signing, it appears the Bucks are ready to admit he wasn’t as effective outside of the post as they expected. His lack of speed means spacing and defensive issues, which were only outdone by his lack of a consistent long range shot.

Monroe inked a three-year deal with Milwaukee back in July, with that third year being a player option worth nearly $18 million.

Along with the availability of Monroe, some experts believe point guard Michael Carter-Williams will be available.