Peace out, draft season. Hello, free agency rumor season. Hook it up into my veins. It has begun.
According to a report from Sporting News' Mitch Lawrence, the Bucks may be in the running to make an offer to former Chicago Bulls big Joakim Noah. Lawrence lists the New Knicks, Minnesota Wolves, and Washington Wizards as other suitors, with Washington reportedly willing to offer the full max to Noah.
Given that the 31 year-old is coming off of surgery to repair a dislocated shoulder, that type of contract seems ... superfluous.
Though the Bucks likely aren't (and shouldn't be) considering offering that type of money to Noah, acquiring him won't come easily either. With Washington maybe offering a truckload and both Minnesota and New York having familiar faces, selling Noah on Milwaukee may be difficult for Kidd and company. The pitch would start with "a substantial offer" as Lawrence notes (whatever that means), and it would require some other housekeeping for it to start making sense.
"Noah also has a big fan in Jason Kidd, who has soured on Greg Monroe, only one season into a deal that has two seasons to run. The Bucks tried to trade him in recent days, but the Celtics and other teams had no interest.
Kidd has told associates he thinks Noah's toughness and experience will greatly help his young rising stars, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jabari Parker. He'll have to convince Noah, though, that he can be happy relocating to a small market.
The Bucks are looking to bounce back from a disastrous season after they made the playoffs in 2015. As Kidd sees it, Noah's addition would be perfect as the Bucks try to live up to their "Own the Future'' marketing campaign."
I'm not sure Noah packs much marketing punch, but herein lies the appeal with bringing in Noah. The injuries give reasonable cause for concern (and a financial discount?), but Noah is only two seasons removed from finishing 4th in the MVP voting, bringing talent to the court that aggravates just about everyone except for the team that he's on. That energy and effort is a common phrase in Kidd's vernacular and must be at least somewhat appealing as the Bucks look to get back to being a team with an identity.
That's not to say Noah would be a flawless fit, but in the event that Greg Monroe is gone this summer, someone is going to have to hold that spot down. John Henson and Miles Plumlee (if he's back) are best as reserve bigs and Thon Maker may not be ready for major minutes for a while, so why not Noah in the short-term?
We're a week or two away from any talks with free agents amounting to anything, but that's not stopping the scuttlebutt from starting. July will be here soon and it should get fun pretty fast.