The Milwaukee Bucks are going to miss Khris Middleton and they know it. He was a rock-solid, 18-points-a-night, strong defender who was the glue that made the otherwise mismatched pieces in Milwaukee work. He is out for most if not all of the season following surgery on a torn hamstring, and the Bucks are trying to find a replacement. They got Michael Beasley, but “glue guy” would not be the best description of his game, so the Bucks keep looking for trades.
They tried to get Ben McLemore out of Sacramento, but that failed, according to a report from Marc Stein of ESPN.
The Bucks, sources say, have since offered former Rookie of the Year guard Michael Carter-Williams to the Sacramento Kings in a trade proposal for Ben McLemore and will continue to probe for potential deals after the Kings rebuffed that pitch for 2013’s No. 7 overall pick.
Good move by the Kings. Carter-Williams is what he is — an inefficient scorer who is turnover prone, but can make some plays on defense. He is an NBA rotation player, he has value, but is probably best suited as a backup point guard.
On the other side, while he has disappointed so far, a lot of teams still like McLemore’s potential, both as a shooter and on defense. There is a sense around the league that if he were put in a different situation, he might blossom more like what is expected of a No. 7 pick. The Kings are still convinced they are turning everything around (and keeping DeMarcus Cousins long term) and McLemore finding a role he thrives in under coach Dave Joerger is part of that. They kept the better player in the deal.
Any team that wants them can get Carter-Williams or Greg Monroe out of Milwaukee for a fair price — as has been the case since last summer. Still, both are on the Bucks, which shows the level of interest around the league. Still, expect the Bucks to keep trying to find a deal and maybe one of them at least moves later this season.