Milwaukee Bucks: Grades and reactions for the Tony Snell trade

MILWAUKEE, WI - NOVEMBER 04: (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WI - NOVEMBER 04: (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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MILWAUKEE, WI – APRIL 17: (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WI – APRIL 17: (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images) /

What the Bucks traded away

The best place to start here is with Tony Snell, the person.

Snell was immensely popular among Bucks fans, becoming something of a cult figure for his quiet demeanor, team-first mindset, and heartbreaking aversion to technology. With Snell gone, the Bucks’ locker room has lost an all-around good guy who seemed incredibly well-liked by his teammates.

All we can hope for is that the spirit of Snell lives on, and the Bucks continue to show the urgency to pick teammates up off the floor that became a trademark for the former New Mexico Lobo.

As a player, Snell is very much serviceable and possesses a useful skill-set for any modern NBA team. A career 38 percent three-point shooter who will embrace tough defensive assignments is certainly useful, although those traits alone undoubtedly declined in value to Milwaukee last season.

For as much as 3-and-D remains essential to the Bucks, the ability for players to dribble and make plays for others has also risen in importance on the wings under Mike Budenholzer’s coaching staff and Jon Horst’s front office.

As a result, Snell spent much of last season struggling to get consistent playing time behind other reserves such as Pat Connaughton, Sterling Brown, George Hill, and even rookie Donte DiVincenzo when healthy.

In terms of competition at his position, Snell may have finished the year as the most redundant player on Milwaukee’s roster. Considering how recently he was a regular starter, Snell playing just 28 minutes in the Bucks’ playoff run spoke volumes in that regard, even when factoring in his recovery from a late season ankle sprain.

Of course, The Tony Snell Play will be desperately missed, as Snell had long since developed a deadly chemistry with Antetokounmpo that led to exceptional success in creating open three-pointers off dribble hand-offs.

In the larger scheme of things, though, for as serviceable as Snell is, there’s nothing about his game that either can’t be replaced for much cheaper or wasn’t simply less important to Milwaukee than what some of his teammates hitting free agency have to offer.