The Milwaukee Bucks saw their championship hopes fall apart with the Miami Heat breezing past them. The conversation has shifted over to Giannis Antetokounmpo’s contract situation with the franchise as he’s nearing the end of his deal. It has put the Bucks in the unique spot of making a strong case to keep their star forward for the long haul. The Bucks are presented with the possibility of making a massive trade for another superstar to strengthen their championship odds next season.
Bucks’ 2019-20 season ends on a sour note
The Bucks entered the playoffs in the Orlando Bubble situation as one of the favorites to secure the NBA title.
However, Milwaukee experienced much of the same shortcomings as they fell short in the Eastern Conference semifinals to the Miami Heat in five games. The Heat dominated the series, while Giannis Antetokounmpo‘s ankle injury put the Bucks at a more significant disadvantage against a red-hot Miami team.
It all quickly shifts the conversation over to Antetokounmpo’s long-term future with the franchise. He’s set to enter the final campaign of his four-year, $100 million contract. There hasn’t been any clarity concerning his plans for his next contractual situation, which puts the onus on the Bucks to make a compelling case for him to stay.
With that in mind, Milwaukee may have one massive trade in mind that could help the franchise realistically compete for an NBA title.
Bucks may explore trading for Chris Paul
The Bucks are coming off their second straight year of finishing with the best regular-season record and falling short in the playoffs.
It has shifted things in the direction toward needing change to not only compete for an NBA title but increasing their odds of retaining Giannis Antetokounmpo. According to Marc Stein of The New York Times, there is chatter around the league that Milwaukee will make a strong push to land Chris Paul.
The scenario will involve plenty of moving around contracts and draft picks, but the Bucks have the means to get a trade done. Paul will be heading into the third year of his four-year, $159.7 million deal, which he will make roughly $41.3 million next season. It’s a significant cap hit for the Bucks to take on, but Paul is playing at an elite level.
With Antetokounmpo’s future still in the air, the Bucks will make a concerted effort to land the future Hall of Famer.
Only time will tell what Giannis Antetokounmpo does
The pressure is on the Bucks to put a team around Giannis Antetokounmpo that can finally get over the hump in the playoffs.
The front office has assembled a highly competitive team, but one that has struggled to find success in the postseason. It’s also fair to assess that Antetokounmpo has needed improvement in his game, such as adding a consistent outside shot. It won’t be surprising to see the Bucks make a strong play to add a player of Chris Paul’s caliber in the offseason regardless if their star forward inks the super-max contract.
Put merely, Milwaukee is in the position of having to make a strong case to Antetokounmpo that they can compete for an NBA title. The 25-year-old will have plenty of free agency options in 2021, which puts a tremendous onus on the Bucks to do what’s necessary. Only time will tell what will unfold in Milwaukee in the coming months.