Milwaukee Bucks: Grading Jon Horst’s eventful tenure as general manager

Jun 19, 2017; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via USA TODAY Sports)
Jun 19, 2017; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via USA TODAY Sports) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Mike Budenholzer, Jon Horst
Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel /

Reviewing Jon Horst’s record in trades in his Milwaukee Bucks tenure

Trades are always hard to judge in the short term, especially when draft picks are involved because we’ll only ever know the full scope of the trade when the players and picks have given us a larger sample. The Bucks have made quite a few dealings since Horst took over.

Horst’s first big trade acquisition was Eric Bledsoe for Greg Monroe and a first round pick (which turned into Desmond Bane). Bledsoe is known for his disappointing playoff performances as a Buck, but this is an obvious win. Monroe only played one more season after being traded from Milwaukee, and Bledsoe was a two-time All-Defense Team selection.

His next big move was dumping the bloated contracts of John Henson and Matthew Dellavedova, as well as a 2022 first round pick (which the Bucks have now got back) in exchange for George Hill. There was more minutiae in the deal, but those were the main parts. You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who thinks this is a bad trade. They got off two bad contracts, and Hill became a vital reserve for the team backing up Bledsoe.

Then there was trading Jason Smith (acquired in the Hill trade) and four second round picks for Nikola Mirotic at the trade deadline in 2019. It wasn’t a huge price to pay for Mirotic, but he ended up being pretty underwhelming in his short time with the Bucks. I can’t call it a loss since none of the second rounders have been incredible (one is Sam Merrill!), but it’s not an overwhelming win either.

Horst’s worst trades are trading Tony Snell and the 30th overall pick in 2019 (Kevin Porter Jr.) for Jon Leuer, a pure salary cap dump of Snell’s contract (which Horst signed), and Brogdon to the Pacers for a 2020 first and two future protected seconds.

Porter had his off-court issues but has also shown incredible flashes in his two seasons, so it’s unfortunate to see that they had to give away that pick because of a contract Horst signed. The Brogdon trade doesn’t look as bad because the first round pick was used in a bigger trade later on, but having Brogdon would be nice!

More recently, Horst has acquired Holiday, Tucker, and Allen in trades. The Holiday trade is the hardest to gauge due to all the draft picks surrendered, but he was instrumental in winning the title. Tucker’s acquisition cost was relatively low, and they got off the Augustin contract, but we’ll see how the draft picks turn out. Allen is undecided since, well, he has yet to play a game, but it looks like a good deal on the surface right now.