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NBA / Jul 1, 2010 / 3:44 pm

Fear the Deer Strikes Again: Bucks close to re-signing John Salmons

Milwaukee ain’t playing around. After a surprise run to the playoffs last season, GM John Hammond must have decided this team couldn’t score, because he’s making moves all over the place to bolster the offense. Recently he’s added Corey Maggette and Chris Douglas-Roberts via trade, and earlier today, Drew Gooden agreed to a 5-year, $32 million deal with the Bucks.

Now it apparently won’t be long until late-season hero John Salmons is on his way back to Milwaukee. The 6-7 swingman is very close to accepting a five-year, $39 million offer according to NBA.com. The deal also includes $5 million in potential bonsues, with a buyout option for the fifth season.

No one expected this. After the aggression the front office showed in picking up secondary wing options the past few weeks, Salmons was supposed to abandon ship and wind up in a place like Miami or New Jersey. As a “Fear the Deer” fan, you can look at the negative: about $40 mill for five more years to a two-guard who is already 30 years old. Or you can say that all of a sudden, Milwaukee is loaded with versatility.

Besides the electric backcourt of Brandon Jennings and Salmons, the Bucks have options in Maggette, CDR and Luc Mbah a Moute. For all of Maggette’s doubters, his one-dimensional game should fit perfectly into a sixth-man role.

Two key cogs from last year, Carlos Delfino and Luke Ridnour, probably won’t be back. Delfino is due to make $3.5 million (it’s partially guaranteed) and I doubt he would earn enough minutes to justify that. But hey, they gave Gooden $32 mill, so don’t rule it out. Ridnour will probably command a salary of around $5-6 mill a year, and there are plenty of teams ready to offer him that. The maturation of Jennings should offset that loss.

The Bucks frontline will receive a boost with the return of Andrew Bogut from injury, not to mention their two draft picks, Larry Sanders and Tiny Gallon. They also have Ersan Ilyasova, who was a surprise contributor last season.

It’s funny we haven’t mentioned Michael Redd, once the face of the franchise. He has a huge expiring contract ($18 million) and is coming off a major knee injury. But he still holds value. Either Milwaukee uses that contract to add talent, or more than likely, let Redd play it out so next summer they get some cap relief.

One way or another, Milwaukee is in great shape heading into this year. They should contend with Atlanta, depending on how free agency shapes out, for home court in the playoffs next year.

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  • asmaticasiatic02

    I like this is squad; hopefully salmons does his job after coping a contract, too many dudes break their back to get signed then suck after….

  • Diego

    Damn, nice signing by the Bucks. Other than the scruffy hobo’s beard, I just don’t see much of a difference these days between Joe Johnson and Salmons. Bucks are going to be tough.

  • Joe’s Momma

    Wow, Milwaukee is paying some dough.

    Lets hope they don’t stay a second tier team in the east. They played very well last year, and got loaded at the wing positions.

    Maggette they will regret though. And they will trade gooden by year 2.

  • Blue

    if i was salmons, i wouldn’t sign just based on the fact that i’d only be making $7 million more than gooden over 5 years. HELL NAH!

  • jryu

    @Diego

    exactly, except salmons is offered 5 yrs $39M and joe johnson is offered 6 yrs $120+ million.. granted JJ is slightly better, but $80M better??? i dont think so… he just turned 29 yesterday too..

  • Spliff 2 My Lou

    The Maggette trade coupled with the possible re-signing of Salmons doesn’t bode well for 2nd round draft pick Darrington Hobson making the team. He has some skills and would be cheap.

  • Lets Go Hawks

    @jryu is so freaking right. Not only is JJ not 80 mil better than salmons but salmons was better in playoffs last season. I love Joe but he is NOT a max player and it blows that he’ll be paid like one

  • Diego

    Yup, at $39 million it is a nice deal for the Bucks compared to that crazy, oversized JJ contract–the 2 guys looked pretty interchangeable in that Hawks/Bucks series. (I really hope the Hawks still have some sign and trade thinking going on.)

  • SK

    Good, now the Bucks will be mediocre forever.

  • ShaqFu

    Can someone please tell us why Salmons can only command $39 million in a market where Drew Gooden gets $32 M and Darko (couldn’t get off the bench for the knicks) Milic gets $20 M for only 4 yrs?

  • BackInBlack

    Drew Gooden would have been perfect for the raptors. He could easily get them 20 and 10 every night.

  • shiptar

    @Sean Sweeney: you think ridnour will get 5-6 million somewhere? no way!

    + i completely agree with your opinions about gooden’s and johnson’s contracts…

  • High Release

    Delfino is signed and will be back. Rumors about Ersan being traded, and I don’t like that!

  • Heckler

    brandon jennings
    john salmons
    corey maggette
    drew gooden
    andrew bogut

    ….
    if this team doesnt win 50 games, scott skiles could be fired. for the first time, hes gonna be coaching a roster with some talent. now he gotta deliver. he cant say management aint get him players.

    i still dont see this team doing much in the reg season. and i dont think the playoffs are a lock for them; even though it should be.

  • matt

    since when drew gooden even a good player. there is a reason he bounces around–zero basketball IQ

  • wit ya

    I hope Gooden grows the “patch” back, lol. I don’t like that pick up, and 32 MIL you got to be kidding me!

    Hobson is a combo guard could he get minutes?

    Is there a no headband rule coming in affect next season?

    I can’t wait for 2k11

  • bobert

    Being a Bucks fan who was watching his team slip slowly down the toilet last year until John Salmons saved our season I love this deal. I don’t see a huge fall off from him next year because SKILES is 100 time better coach than DELNEGRO.

    Steal for $39 mil with Johnson being offered $120 mil (Joe Johnson is the next Michael Redd deal)

    Lets see what Gooden can do with a stable system and a legit center next to him; which he hasn’t had before.

  • http://dimemag.com Sean Sweeney

    @shiptar Ridnour could command that somewhere. The mid-level exception is around that much…I wouldn’t be surprised at all if he got that.

  • http://devon1delgado.bravejournal.com James

    Come on dude, these facts* and proof* i mean who is posting* lol :P