Now that the Brew Hoop readers have broken free of the middle tier of the roster, this vote was an easy one. With 73% of the vote, Ersan Ilyasova has been named the least valuable Milwaukee Buck still remaining, taking the sixth spot in our rankings.
Bucks fans are well-acquainted with Turkish Thunder, given that he was a second round pick of Milwaukee’s back in 2006, and had a lengthy tenure with the team until a trade took him through Detroit in 2015. Since then, he’s been a Piston, a Magic (?), a Thunder (???), a 76er, a Hawk, a 76er again, all over the course of three years. You could say that Ersan gets around, and you’d be right, but that’s because he’s a low-risk option at PF that does a bunch of useful things.
Quick reax re: Ersan in Milwaukee (Vol. 3):— Mitchell Maurer (@Mitchell_NBA) July 1, 2018
-Functional big man with helpful skills AND floor-stretching ability
-Until more details come out, 3/21 is too much/too long
-Can probably play small ball 5, which means Bucks have 2 big shooters (Ersan/Thon) with Giannis
Are you searching for a reason why Ersan wasn’t ousted earlier? You aren't alone, and need to look no further than the contract Ilyasova signed with Milwaukee in the early minutes of free agency. The initial report of 3 years/$21 million sent fans into a tizzy, and while the details of the deal changed it to actually be more like 2 years/$14 million, a number of fans were still hung up on the timing of the signing. And here’s the thing: they’re right! Making Ersan Ilyasova a top priority and inking a deal at midnight on July 1st is the sort of thing that the Milwaukee Bucks are infamous for, with the prevailing notion that better value (with Ersan or someone like him) could have been gotten later in the process.
Beyond that, though, are the optics of the signing. Paying Ersan so much (relatively) and so early in free agency cast a giant cloud over the Jabari Parker contract negotiations, and signaled that the team truly did not prioritize keeping Parker in the fold. Whether or not this was the right decision (many think it was), it undercut the Bucks’ bargaining position with Parker and with any other team that might have been motivated to give up something of value for him. Of course, this assumes that there actually was a market to leverage, and as a wise man once said: you can’t leverage a market if there is no market.
Back to Ersan. The bottom line is that the Milwaukee Bucks signed a player who offers useful skills in the front court and should complement Giannis Antetokounmpo, space the floor for Eric Bledsoe, and provide valuable minutes at power forward (so that Khris Middleton never has to). He’s a bit expensive and has a low ceiling, but that’s okay on a short term deal. Ersan will help this team more than he hurts them, and that’s what matters right now.
2018 Brew Hoop Roster Ranking
- Ersan Ilyasova
- Thon Maker
- Donte DiVincenzo
- Tony Snell
- Sterling Brown
- Pat Connaughton
- Matthew Dellavedova
- John Henson
- Christian Wood
- Tyler Zeller
- Shabazz Muhammad
- D.J. Wilson
The next least valuable Buck on the roster is...
This poll is closed