What Does it Mean for Bucks Long Term?
The echoes of déjà vu reverberate through Milwaukee, as the Bucks have once again traded their way into a high-stakes poker game. The last time they faced such a crossroads, they gambled on Holiday, and the dividends were an NBA championship. Now, the ante has been upped considerably with Lillard in the mix.
This blockbuster trade not only shushes the incessant rumors about Antetokounmpo’s future in Milwaukee but also profoundly alters the Bucks’ trajectory. Lillard’s eye-watering $45.6 million salary this season, coupled with a contractual commitment through 2025-26 and a player option for 2026-27, extends further than the Greek Freak’s current tenure. It sets the stage for a discussion about Antetokounmpo’s own contract extension.
Yet, amidst the excitement of a potentially elite two-year championship window, Milwaukee’s long-term outlook appears hazy. The cost of going all-in now means sacrificing future draft picks, with the Bucks not holding their own until at least 2031. This future mortgaging is the stark reality for small-market teams aspiring to seize the moment.
As they say in Japanese tea ceremonies, “Ichi-go Ichi-e” – a moment in time that shall not be repeated. The Bucks have seized theirs, and only time will reveal the cards they hold in this high-stakes game.