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Denver Post: Malik Allen to Nuggets for Weems & Sharpe

Sonny Weems is a Buck...for now at least

The Denver Post is confirming the Malik Allen/Sonny Weems deal we first mentioned last night, though now it appears that second-year forward Walter Sharpe will also be heading to Milwaukee. Weems is a hyper-athletic shooting guard whose most notable rookie accomplishment was helping Colorado to the D-League title, but perhaps just as importantly his $736k salary is only partially guaranteed.  If the Bucks waive him by August 15 he'll be owed just $174k.  Sharpe's expiring minimum deal is for a guaranteed $736k, but Gery Woelfel tweets that Sharpe is expected to miss all of 09/10 with an ACL tear.  For the Nuggets' perspective, check out Pickaxe and Roll and Roundball Mining Co.

With Allen's $1.3 million deal heading out, that means the Bucks could save up to $390k by cutting Weems--about $700k less than I had hoped last night when Sharpe's guaranteed deal hadn't been mentioned.  Keeping Weems along with Sharpe would add about $172k to their cap number.  If the Bucks do want to match a Sessions offer sheet then every dollar of savings will help keep them under the tax threshold, but with Sharpe's dead weight included it would seem this was more about moving a useless veteran for an athletic youngster with some vague potential. 

The 39th overall pick in 2008, Weems is kind of like a smaller Joe Alexander--immensely gifted physically, but as of yet unable to figure things out at the highest level.  He played just 55 minutes total in Denver last season, but did average 20.5 ppg in the D-League, including 22.8 ppg as Colorado won the D-League title.  Weems shot just 32.6% in Vegas last week, but did average 16.6 ppg and 6.6 rpg, including a 28 point/9 rebound effort in Denver's last game.  My gut reaction is that he's kind of like David Noel, only without the three point range.  Terrific.   Cynicism aside, Jeremy's a bit more optimistic, and I can see the argument for acquiring young athletes who might eventually get it.  I just don't want to be relying on Weems to provide real minutes this season.

Ironically, the Bucks had Sharpe in last year for the same predraft workout as Joe Alexander and Luc Mbah a Moute, but if he's out for the year then odds are he never wears a Bucks jersey.  A combo forward, Sharpe was a somewhat surprising 32nd overall selection by the Pistons a year ago--ahead of Mbah a Moute and Mario Chalmers--but played just 20 minutes all year before being shipped to Denver just last week along with Aron Afflalo in a cost-cutting move.  At 6'9" and 245 pounds, he was solid at UAB when he was on the court, but he missed most of his final season due to academic issues and similar problems got him booted from Mississippi State before that.  So yeah, maybe not the best choice to send to those "stay in school" speeches that NBA players get forced to do from time to time.  I won't act like I know much about his game, but the consensus seems to be that he's a physically gifted guy who neither defends nor has much feel for the game.  Do with that what you will.

Sharpe might never wear a Bucks uni, but here he is at UAB

Having previously played for Scott Skiles in Chicago, Allen reprised his role last year as the mediocre veteran who stole minutes from more talented players--Charlie Villanueva and Luc Mbah a Moute being the "victims" last year.  His on court/off court splits were actually pretty good and his opponent PF stats were actually excellent, so we might have been a bit harsh to him, though at the end of the day he's an end-of-bench type and little more.  Especially given the presence of young guys like Johnson, Ilyasova, Mbah a Moute and Alexander all looking for burn at PF, there's no need to have Allen eating up minutes.  Given how far Weems and Sharpe are from being NBA contributors, it's not likely that this deal ever provides clear benefits, but it certainly won't hurt the new-look Bucks either.