Trade speculation continues to center around Milwaukee Bucks guard Eric Bledsoe and it’s reportedly an open secret the veteran is traded this offseason.
The trade winds are blowing around the Milwaukee Bucks and one key player in particular, that being Eric Bledsoe.
Another disappointing playoff finish for the Bucks and another year in which Bledsoe’s playoff struggles and offensive flaws were on full display have made his Bucks stint quite tenable to say the least. And reports continue to suggest that that is truly the case for the veteran guard.
From a recent column by Chris Sheridan over at BasketballNews.com that focused on the Bucks’ challenges this offseason, he included that the Bucks’ attempts to trade Bledsoe this offseason is open secret around the league:
“It is an open secret in the NBA that the Bucks are going to try to trade Eric Bledsoe, although no current trade discussions are taking place, a league source said on Thursday.”
As Sheridan further explained in his piece, the reasons why discussions have not yet taken place is simply due to the uncertainty surrounding the financial outlook and salary cap for next season:
“So the league and the Players’ Association must first figure out what the salary cap will be next season, along with when the season will start and whether fans will be allowed into arenas. That is the reason why the Bucks are not actively trying to trade Bledsoe. They are in a holding pattern, like every other NBA team.”
Of course, none of the details from Sheridan are particularly revelatory at this point in light of the disappointing end to their season this year. The Athletic’s Shams Charania ($$) was the first to report that Bledsoe is a potential trade candidate in light of the Bucks’ playoff exit in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
Yet Sheridan’s insight only reinforces the fact that Bledsoe’s expendability may be growing to the point of no return as far his time with the Milwaukee Bucks is considered.
That creates quite a tension in which the Bucks’ desire to upgrade their roster at the expense of dealing Bledsoe forces the Bucks’ hand as far as leverage is considered.
The failure, however, of at least reaching this year’s NBA Finals as well as as the uncertainty that exists around superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo and his future in Milwaukee has already put the Bucks between a rock and in a hard place this offseason.
Simply put, all 29 other NBA teams are aware of the issues and needs that ail the Bucks at the moment. With little financial flexibility and the fact that Bledsoe has three years and at least $38.9 million guaranteed over his deal makes assessing his trade value a complicated case, on top of his high-profile postseason struggles.
Whether it will prove true that we’ve seen the last of Bledsoe in a Bucks uniform ultimately remains to be seen, but expect to see rumors of his potential exit to simmer as we plunge further into the offseason.