The conventional wisdom heading into the opening of free agency last July 1 was that Greg Monroe was bound for New York, in part because of the ties between Monroe’s agent David Falk (Michael Jordan’s former agent) and Phil Jackson. Monroe, of course, listened to the pitch in Milwaukee and saw a better fit for his future and chose Wisconsin. Jackson and the Knicks did alright for themselves at the five, landing Robin Lopez.
But the situation might have been reversed.
According to coach Jason Kidd, the Bucks were ready to make a run at Lopez, too, as reported by Marc Berman at the New York Post.
“We liked both of those guys,’’ Kidd said at Bucks practice Tuesday. “They both do something and they’re very productive. I think both teams got maybe the guy they wanted. Looking at the Lopezes, I’ve coached one of them and recruited another. They’ve always played the game the right way. The Knicks ended up with Lopez, which is a good pickup for them.”
This likely didn’t go much of anywhere — maybe a few back channel conversations — because Monroe made his decision fairly quickly. Still, it’s interesting and shows the Bucks’ ambition as a franchise.
Just a reminder Knicks fans, if he hadn’t chosen the Bucks Monroe likely would have replaced Lopez in Portland, not been apartment hunting in Chelsea.
However, if you think this was a little crazy, wait until next summer when two-thirds of the league has money and the free agent class is not very deep.