With Mike Budenholzer as Bucks’ coach and his emphasis on shooting to space the floor, plus the roster additions of Brook Lopez at center and Ersan Ilyasova, Thon Maker has seen his role shrink this season. For the season he is averaging less than 12 minutes a game, five fewer than a season ago, he has sat three of the last six games, and hasn’t played more than 10 minutes in a game in three weeks.
A frustrated Maker wants out, his representatives told Milwaukee management, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
The representative for Milwaukee Bucks center Thon Maker has told management that he would prefer the franchise to find a trade partner that would provide a larger role for the former lottery pick, league sources told ESPN….
As Maker’s playing time has diminished under new coach Mike Budenholzer in the Bucks’ surge to the NBA’s best record, agent Mike George and Milwaukee general manager Jon Horst have discussed trade scenarios in recent weeks that would potentially make sense for both the player and team, league sources said.
The Bucks likely will try to honor the request (teams tend to, it’s good for business), but they aren’t going to just give Maker away, either. A young team willing to roll the dice they can bring more out of Maker and who has a veteran that could help the Bucks in the short term may be able to find a deal.
Getting something done before Feb. 7 may be difficult in a tight market (which is likely why this story was leaked, to put pressure on the Bucks). However, Maker almost certainly will be traded in the offseason.
Then he has a season to impress his new coach and management. While Maker is technically contract extension-eligible this summer, the more likely outcome is a team will let him go to restricted free agency in the summer of 2020 and let the market set his price. Play well next season and Maker will get a payday.
But first, he’s got to get somewhere he can get the minutes to prove his worth.