Assessing Bleacher Report’s Kelly Oubre Jr. trade for the Milwaukee Bucks

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - DECEMBER 01 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - DECEMBER 01 (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Serge Ibaka, Charlotte Hornets: Kelly Oubre Jr.
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – FEBRUARY 28 (Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images) /

The Milwaukee Bucks’ POV on Bleacher Report’s proposed trade for Kelly Oubre with the Charlotte Hornets

With Khris Middleton sidelined for virtually the entirety of the Milwaukee Bucks’ 2022 playoff run, the team’s lack of wing depth was on full display. Horst needs to swing a deal for a quality wing in the 2022 offseason to prevent this concern from resurfacing once again next season, and perhaps Kelly Oubre could be a fitting target for the franchise.

In theory, Oubre would be a solid fit for Milwaukee on both sides of the basketball. Defensively, the 6-foot-7 small forward would bring some much-needed versatility to the roster, giving them a big wing that can defend multiple positions at a high level. Oubre could take on the Wesley Matthews role, which entails guarding the opposing team’s top wing scorer. While Matthews has expressed a clear desire to return to the Bucks next season, that should not deter them from making a deal like this, as having those two on the wing defensively would be a lethal combination.

Offensively, Oubre could provide a sizeable boost off Milwaukee’s bench, which, in addition to their wing depth, was a prominent problem last season. According to, the Bucks’ bench ranked 27th in points per contest during the 2021-22 regular season, which came back to plague them in the postseason. Oubre is coming off a solid year where he averaged 15 points per game in a bench role with the Hornets, and his scoring ability could help bolster Milwaukee’s reserve unit. The biggest question regarding Oubre’s fit with the Bucks is whether or not he could knock down his triples with any consistency, as he has shot just 33.1 percent from three in his career, and an outside shot is pivotal with any newcomer. Still, his overall scoring potential is desirable.

As for what the Bucks would be moving in this trade, it would certainly be tough to see the team trade away Brook Lopez. The center has been a crucial piece for the Bucks over the years, and his interior defense would be tough to replace, given that he is one of the best in the business in that regard. However, the big man is 34-years-old and is coming off a back surgery that cost him most of last season, so there are concerns there. NBA insider Marc Stein (subscription required) recently reported also that Bobby Portis is likely to return to the Bucks on a multi-year deal in free agency, and after he just put together the best season of his career as a starter, they may feel good about what he could do in that role full-time, but that is just speculation. The obvious obstacle here is if the Bucks would be willing to move Lopez in such a deal, as it is questionable.

The second rounder would be nothing more than a pot sweetener here.