Bucks and Rockets obviously still seem determined to compete for a title next year, despite end-of-cycle appearances. The two franchises could therefore agree around a trade involving no less than 5 players, and not the least.
We are gradually starting to identify which teams could be active on the transfer market in the coming weeks. The biggest movements should thus be recorded among franchises contending for the title, profile in which the Bucks and Rockets find themselves.
Candidates for the Larry O’Brien Trophy for several years now, the two organizations have once again failed in their quest in 2020. While many awaited a restructuring of their respective projects, their leaders still seem convinced that they can turn the tide by doing some retouching in their roster.
The identity of the players no longer in the odor of sanctity is also clear in each group. Eric Bledsoe could be the sacrificed Milwaukee 5 major, while Russell Westbrook never found his place alongside James Harden. From then on, Danny Cunningham of Complex imagined a trade settling the two parties.
The Bucks receive: Russell Westbrook
The Rockets receive: Eric Bledsoe, Brook Lopez, Robin Lopez, Ersan Ilyasova, 1st round pick 2020 (via Indiana)
Let’s take a look at the Bucks first, and their potential interest in concluding such a deal. Even if Giannis Antetokounmpo seems to want to play the next season with the franchise, he expects from his superiors testimonies of their great ambitions. According to the journalist, the arrival of Westbrook would be one.
Is Westbrook a perfect fit for Milwaukee? Absolutely not. He is not a good outside shooter, nor an excellent defender. But Westbrook would symbolize Milwaukee’s desire to move all-in to be crowned champions this year with Giannis. The Bucks must do everything in their power to win the title in 2021, and if they don’t, they could see their hopes of retaining the double MVP dashed.
As far as the Rockets are concerned, the package recovered in this affair is sobering. They would have a direct replacement at Brodie, whose profile seems more complementary to that of James Harden, as well as a post 5 good defender and shooter with Brook Lopez. Cunningham goes even further.
The Rockets pick up a nice prize with Westbrook’s money, and on top of that a pick from the 1st round. Brook Lopez is surely going to cost a little more than what Houston would want, but he’s got value if they’re going to part with him. Bledsoe’s contract isn’t ideal either, but his trajectory could resemble that of Chris Paul at OKC. If he delivers a good season, he will only have 2 years left on his lease, and his value will rise.
Even if the fits generated by this exchange are not immediately obvious, the two franchises involved may therefore find their account despite everything. This is all still speculative, however, and unleashing a move like this will certainly depend on how Russell Westbrook’s case is handled in Rocket City.
In search of clever reinforcements to create a roster worthy of a title from 2021, the Rockets and the Bucks could therefore consider this trade, which could possibly prove to be a win-win.