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Brockman in town, dealing with Redd and Tiny, Jennings in China

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Bucks.com: Brockman press conference
One highlight from John Hammond, regarding why Brockman fits in with the Bucks' philosophy:

"Let's also have the toughest, most highly energetic people we can possibly find. Because toughness and energy will also win for you. And I think by NBA standards, Jon is going to be right at the top when you talk about someone that plays with those two aspects in his game.  In that regard he's going to be a great fit. You can never have too many guys like that--we won with guys like that last year. Adding another person like that is only going to help us."

And he digs Big Crazy Dave's artwork, too. Despite Brockman's lack of length, Hammond also said the Bucks viewed him as capable of playing both the power forward and center positions. A good thing given the Bucks' lack of experience behind Andrew Bogut. And yes, I'm sad that Kurt Thomas is heading to Chicago. I assumed he was gone, but the Bulls? Damn, Kurt.

Delfino: An egg that's hatched?
Really enjoyed this piece that our Argentine correspondent Palomba posted on Carlos Delfino (c
redit to unklchuk for the egg metaphor!). Check it out if you haven't already.

JS: Hammond says Redd wants to keep playing
A bit more discussion on the Buck who shall not be named.

"We just say February, but there’s not a February date per se," said Hammond during a press conference to introduce newcomer Jon Brockman. "It could be before or it could be after. I think it’s just somewhat of a targeted date but who knows when that’s going to be?

"But at the end of the day, all we’re doing is supporting Michael as he continues to go through this process and supporting him through the re-hab. He knows we’re there for him. I know he’s working as hard as he possibly can to get himself back. There’s no doubt in my mind that he wants to continue his NBA career and he’s got a long road ahead of him to get to that point."

Bucksketball: Patience a virtue...for some
Pretty much agree with everything in Jeremy's latest piece.

When I see Coach Skiles say Gallon has ‘an awful lot to work on’ and is ‘going to need to be a lot better to make our team and do anything.’ I don’t get concerned. I get excited. That’s how young players get developed in the league. No hand-holding, no bsing, just an organization getting serious with its players. While Coach Skiles is saying that, the assistants are working hard with Gallon to make sure he knows where he needs to improve. To me, Skiles quotes are not an indication that Gallon isn’t going to be apart of Milwaukee’s future, just a comment on how talented Milwaukee is these days.

Dime: Do the Right Thing for Redd
Everyone wants to talk about Redd.

Hopefully the Bucks remember the human element of this game and do the right thing. Whatever that may be, if it’s trading him to a decent team, negotiating a reasonable buyout, or letting him stay with the team and seeing if he can contribute down the stretch during a playoff run. Just remember, he’s not a poker chip.

Honestly, I don't see how the Bucks owe Redd anything in terms of playing time this year. It's a different team from the one he once captained, and if there are doubts about his ability to help the team then there's no room for the Bucks to be charitable. I doubt Redd would want that either, though as a competitor he'll probably always believe he can help the team. Trading his expiring deal is always an option, but that would likely involve committing more long-term dollars to someone who may not be worth it (we'll see).

If and when Redd is ready to return, the Bucks can also consider buying him out. But while he's injured the Bucks are best off collecting insurance checks and letting him rehab on his own--there's no sense in a buyout. Redd will make $18.3 million regardless of what he does on the court, and the Bucks stand to make 80% of that back so long as he's not playing. Why would Redd accept significantly less than what he's owed, and why would the Bucks offer close to that amount until he's back?  

Thorpe: Summer League rookie rankings
David Thorpe has Larry Sanders ranked 8th in his wrap-up of summer league rookies. In case you're curious, here's the same column from last year.

Sanders helps prove a point I always like to make: In the NBA, the first guy to the ball normally wins. Sanders is still thin, but his bounce and energy get his hands to the ball first most of the time. Those two talents also earn him quality shots inside. Although he's not a finisher yet, that kind of upside is exciting to Bucks personnel.

SBNation.comRanking All 30 NBA GMs
Mike Prada takes a valiant crack at ranking basketball's decision-makers. He's got John Hammond coming in at number 11, dropping him for this summer's more free spending approach. 

Hammond would have been higher if not for his curious 2010 offseason, when he seemingly abandoned the principles that allowed his club to have so much success in 2009/10. Last season, the Bucks were the quintessential "more than the sum of their parts" team, and Hammond deserves so much credit because he realized that tough defense is undervalued in this market. He hired a coach who preaches it, made sure to build around a point guard/center tandem and found great bargains to fill the other spots in the lineup. He was also opportunistic in trading for John Salmons when his value was lowest.

The interesting part is that even Hammond has acknowledged the change in philosophy, noting that the Bucks didn't feel like they could stand pat after last season's unexpected success.

Xinhua: Jennings shines in China-NBA charity game
Brandon Jennings apparently wasn't good enough for the Team USA training camp (I smell motivation?), so he's getting his travel on in China, playing in charity games to raise money for Yao Ming's foundation. He scored 23 on 10/17 shooting to lead the US team to victory. Have fun, Brandon...and don't get hurt. 

SI: Worst deals of the summer
Britt Robson is not a fan of the Bucks' summer wing spending.

Maggette hurts his team two ways: no ball movement and no defense. On a Warriors team of chuckers, he ranked behind only guard Monta Ellis in shots per minute, and even that total is deflated by all the shots that don't get tabulated because he was fouled on the play. At the other end of the court, Maggette was a liability. As badly as Golden State plays defense, it was 6.3 points per 100 possessions worse when Maggette was on the court.

It's not guaranteed that Maggette will be a good thing on net for the Bucks, but let's also not confuse ball movement with good offense. The Bucks were 23rd in offensive efficiency last year and moved the ball a bunch in part because they didn't have players capable of creating their own shot. That's why a reputed "ball-stopper" like Salmons didn't hurt them one bit--finally they had someone capable of putting pressure on the defense rather than dumping it off like a hot potato. You can make a good argument for why Salmons and Maggette together aren't a great offensive pairing, but that's also why I'd be happy to see them bring Maggette off the bench.

The defensive concerns are more valid, but one thing to remember is that Maggette was playing mostly out of position as a power forward last year. I'm not going to claim that he's a good defender, but his numbers in Golden State are tough to take at face value, especially on defense. The last time he played SF full time (07/08), the Clippers were actually better defensively by 3.3 pts/100 possessions when he was on the court. I'd be very surprised if the Bucks were better defensively with him on the court this year--Carlos Delfino and Luc Mbah a Moute are actually above average defenders--but I'm not convinced he's going to single-handedly deep six the Bucks' defense.