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The Milwaukee Bucks have finally landed that star Giannis Antetokounmpo has been waiting for. Tonight’s deal sends Eric Bledsoe, George Hill, and three first-round picks in exchange for New Orleans Pelicans’ guard Jrue Holiday. It’s an absolute monster deal, but it had to be done.
New Orleans is nearing completion of a deal to send G Jrue Holiday to Milwaukee for Eric Bledsoe, George Hill and what’s described as “significant” draft compensation, sources tell ESPN. Teams are still working through the picks in trade.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 17, 2020
After a humiliating early playoff exit, Giannis sat down with Milwaukee’s front office and said that the team needed to get creative to improve this roster. This is what he meant. Trading away three first-round picks isn’t exactly “small market” friendly, but the Bucks had no choice. To get a player of Holiday’s caliber, they needed to give up assets that didn’t hurt their chances in 2020-21. Giannis should be elated at tonight’s news.
Holiday hasn’t gotten a ton of recognition, making just one All-Star Game appearance, but basketball gurus know about his ability on both ends of the court. He’s been named to the NBA all-defense team twice (2018, 2019), so he will pair well with Giannis. Now, the Greek Freak won’t need to guard the other team’s best player and waste energy he could be using late in games. Jrue Holiday is more than capable of playing extended minutes in matchups Milwaukee will see deep in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Keeps getting better
Holiday averaged 19.1 points/game last season, but his real impact will be with his playmaking ability. He scored at that clip while dishing 6.7 assists per contest, which will change Giannis’ world on the offense end. The days of loading up one side of the court because no one else can make a play are over. Don’t be surprised when Giannis uses this new running mate to improve his own game. There’s no official word yet, but it’s now likely Giannis rewards Milwaukee for their aggressiveness by signing a super max deal.
Big day for the city of Milwaukee.