Bucks Have Their Eye on P.J. Tucker Trade to Bolster Defense

by February 22, 2021
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P.J. Tucker, Giannis Antetekounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks, Houston Rockets

The Milwaukee Bucks are undoubtedly one of the most formidable teams in the NBA, yet struggle with a lack of fit between their personnel and defensive scheme.

As a result, Milwaukee has set their sights on Houston Rockets veteran forward P.J. Tucker as they attempt to revamp their once-vaunted defense, according to The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor. Tucker, 35-years-old, is considered to be one of the most versatile defenders at 6’5″ and 245 pounds, able to guard both perimeter and frontcourt players effectively.

For a team that employs a heavy-switching scheme, Tucker’s fit is the definition of perfect. The only conundrum is for the asset-depleted Bucks to find the right offer for Tucker.

League sources told me in November that the Bucks were in pursuit of P.J. Tucker from the Rockets. Their interest remains today.

So much has happened in the NBA world over the past few months—like John Wall being traded to Houston, James Harden being traded to Brooklyn, or Russell Westbrook being traded to Washington—that the offseason’s biggest splash move has been all but forgotten.

Yet, it was only three months ago that the Bucks gave up a king’s ransom for Jrue Holiday in an effort to appease superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo and make the allure of a supermax deal even more desirable.

While the Greek Freak would indeed sign a five-year, $228 million contract to remain with the Bucks, the Holiday deal hasn’t gone exactly as planned in Milwaukee. Not through any fault of Holiday’s, considering that he’s been turning in healthy averages of 16.4 points, 5.4 assists and a league-high 1.9 steals per game while shooting .502 from the field and .387 from 3-point range.

Nonetheless, the Bucks are 18-13, 3rd in the Eastern Conference. In a vacuum, Milwaukee’s win-loss record is nothing to frown at but considering that the Bucks only lost 17 games the entire 2019-20 season, it’s fair to question whether Milwaukee needs to make another move.

It appears they’ve long been considering it themselves.

Hopefully, for the Bucks, Tucker turns out to be the missing piece to their championship puzzle.

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