Brandon Knight had a breakout year for the Bucks last season, but there are legitimate questions surrounding his level of production.
Milwaukee was the worst team in the league, and that’s saying something considering just how blatant the Sixers strategy of tanking has been, along with the fact that Philadelphia lost 26 straight games at one point last season.
Knight flourished, but at least a little bit of how well he played has to be chalked up to putting up big numbers on a bad team. He averaged 17.9 points and 4.9 assists, but shot just 42.2 percent from the field, while playing 33.3 minutes per night and finishing in the top 20 in usage rate among qualified players.
The Bucks have a decision to make, because Knight is eligible for a contract extension before Oct. 31. Knight insists he isn’t focused on his financial future, and is simply content preparing for the upcoming season.
The Bucks have until the end of the month to extend Knight’s contract. If they don’t, he’ll become a restricted free agent after this season. And, if that occurs, the offensively-challenged Bucks could be flirting with fire. Knight, who is represented by Arn Tellem, arguably the best agent in the game, could decide to become an unrestricted free agent the following season and undoubtedly draw keen interest from several teams in larger markets. …
“That’s for agents to do and for the media to talk about,’’ Knight said about his contract situation. “He (Bledsoe) did his thing this year and his agent (Rich Paul) did a great job of getting him that deal.
“I’m taking it day by day. I’m not even focusing on that now. Either way, I’m going to play well this season like I played well last season.’’
Knight was compared with Eric Bledsoe in this piece, which seems a bit silly on the surface. The numbers are somewhat similar, but Bledsoe is nicknamed mini-LeBron for a reason, and that $70 million contract he received from Phoenix isn’t something Knight will get anywhere close to, even if Milwaukee chooses not to extend him, and allows him to become a restricted free agent next summer.
Knight’s best opportunity to receive a payday might be in Milwaukee. The team has a new ownership group, and is looking to build by adding young pieces that can be cornerstones for the future. Add in the fact that Knight will be coached this season by a Hall of Fame point guard in Jason Kidd, and his future might ultimately end up being brightest with the Bucks.