Jan. 8, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Ersan Ilyasova (7) against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Bucks 109-93. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Stewart-US PRESSWIRE.

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Journal Times:  Ersan Ilyasova wants more, and he’s not afraid to ask for it.  According to Gery Woelfel, the unrestricted free agent is set to embark on a week of courtship among NBA and non-NBA teams alike.

“We plan on visiting three teams in the next week and maybe some after that,” said Tolga Tugsavul, one of Ilyasova’s representatives, in a telephone interview from Turkey. “We will be talking to some teams in Europe, too.”

The Bucks have a five-year deal on the table for Ilyasova with an annual value approaching $8 million per season.  Rumblings of Ersan’s unhappiness in Milwaukee persist, too.

While Tugsavul was guarded about Ilyasova’s intentions, some acquaintances of Ilyasova told The Journal Times he wasn’t particularly content in Milwaukee and would sign with another team that made a comparable or better offer than the Bucks.

Tugsavul wouldn’t divulge how much Ilyasova is seeking, but some people who have been involved with Ilyasova’s free-agent activities said it was $10 million a season.

Asked when he expected Ilyasova to select a team, Tugsavul said, “within the next 10 days.”

Whoa. The general response to reports of an $8 million per year deal was tepid at best, and I can’t imagine that a $10 million dollar deal would sit well with fans (who have no say) or GM John Hammond (who has plenty of say and would have to deal with the salary cap implications).

The piece also mentions a handful of players with whom the Bucks the Bucks have had discussions. It’s largely the same rotating cast of characters that arises in Bucks chatter on an annual basis: Carl Landry, Joel Przybilla, Kwame Brown, Kirk Hinrich, and C.J. Miles.

Y! Sports: The problem for Ilyasova, of course,  is that the suitor most willing to go to $10 million per year annually is the one who can’t — at least not directly.  And even Brooklyn is treating Ilyasova as a backup plan.

Brooklyn wants Orlando’s Dwight Howard. (Who wouldn’t add Dwight before Ersan?)  But if they can’t land Howard, then the Nets would be interested in Ilyasova; however, they are lacking the cap room to sign Ersan directly.

Short of a deal for Howard, the Nets are searching for a third team to take their own free agent, Kris Humphries, as part of a sign-and-trade scenario with the Bucks. The third team would potentially be rewarded with future draft picks from the Nets for taking on Humphries. Milwaukee could end up with a trade exception for future use.

So far, the Bucks are unmoved over sign-and-trade options for Ilyasova and are determined to keep him.

Ooh, a trade exception!  That would be perfect when the next high-salaried team comes to the Bucks looking to dump an overpaid, underperforming mistake.

No, thanks. Really.  There is no sense in helping a team in your own conference take your best players for a trade exception. It’s just an invitation to make the next mistake trade.

Twitter: Were the rumors that Ersan had a big offer on the table from a European team just a bluff? A Turkish writer for SoloBasket and SportandoBaskets say that the field of candidates for Ilyasova is smaller than the list from earlier in the week.

Bucksketball:  Personally, I’m in the camp that says Ilyasova is worth a five-year deal at $7 to 8 million annually, but that does not mean that a half-decade commitment would not concern me.  Jeremy did a fantastic job tying my short intestines into a knot.

And if you’re already getting ready to tell me about how Ilysaova is the Bucks third best player, I’ll quickly let you know that’s actually what the Bucks problem is right now. Being the third best player on a team that’s fallen short of the playoffs the last two years isn’t all that impressive.  It’s probably worth pointing out here too that, in his best season ever, Ilyasova played 14 minutes in the Bucks most important game last season. Yeah, this dude is irreplaceable.

Dime Magazine: Daniel Marks interviews John Henson on the NBA pre-draft experience. Among Henson’s replies, he notes that he has not changed his diet.

Dime: What was your diet like the last two months?
JH: Nothing really changed over the last two months. I’m not a diet guy, I’m not a guy that needs to be on a diet, I need to put on some weight, so I just ate everything I usually ate, I didn’t change anything.

Business Insider:  Remember when the NBA and NBPA prolonged the lockout for months over a sum tantamount to a few hundred millions of dollars?  Well, the NBA has doled out that amount — and then some — in contracts over the past five days.  Ersanity aside, the Bucks have been one of the sanest teams in the league this week.  Here are ten contracts of the overvalued variety totaling $293 million. It should be noted that this list came out before Jeremy Lin, Nicolas Batum, and Brandon Roy were signed for a combined $95 million (and before the rumored four-year, $40 million negotiations between the Celtics and Jeff Green?!?!?!)

Tags: Carl Landry Ersan Ilyasova Featured Joel Przybilla Kirk Hinrich Milwaukee Bucks NBA New Jersey Nets Popular Turkey