The Milwaukee Bucks will have a challenging time making significant improvements to their roster this off-season due to a lack of spending money and assets.
In free agency, they’ll be able to offer a few minimum contracts in an attempt to entice players to come to the 414. That means the Bucks will likely be looking into some players who will not be on the upper portion of anyone’s wishlists. However, rather than looking at that negatively, perhaps it could give Milwaukee a chance to find a diamond in the rough.
Among the latest examples of reclamation projects for the Bucks is Jevon Carter, who came over in 2022 after being released by the Brooklyn Nets. Carter, who was set to be on his four team at that point, played the best basketball of his career in Milwaukee. He was undeniably a hidden gem find for this team, and the Bucks would love to find another one like him this off-season.
With that said, let us look at five reclamation projects the Bucks should go after in free agency.
Milwaukee Bucks’ reclamation project No. 1 – Darius Bazley
It was a strange year for Darius Bazley. After three solid seasons with the OKC Thunder, his role shrunk significantly this season, and it only got worse after he was traded to the Phoenix Suns at the trade deadline, as he was an afterthought in their rotation entirely. The forward is now set to be a restricted free agent, and if the Suns let him go, the Bucks should be all over him.
Bazley checks off several boxes for the Bucks, especially their need for youth. Having just finished his fourth NBA season, Bazley is still 22 years old and has plenty of room to grow. He’d add a rare touch of youth to what was the oldest roster in the NBA this past season. On the floor, he’s a big 6-foot-8 power forward who has shown signs of scoring potential. Over the two seasons prior to this one, he averaged 12.1 points while also hauling in 6.7 rebounds per game.
There is potential in Bazley; he just needs the right team to help unlock it. If the Bucks could snag him off the market for cheap, it would be an under-the-radar signing to bring more scoring, youth, and rebounding to this bench brigade.