By my watch, the final buzzer sounded on the Bucks’ 117-110 loss to Toronto tonight at 9:26pm (and about 30 seconds, if you really want to get specific). At 9:27pm, noted NBA newsbreaker Shams Charania tweeted this:
The Milwaukee Bucks plan to waive center DeMarcus Cousins, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Bucks are opting for roster flexibility ahead of league-wide contract guarantee date Friday. There’s expected to be interest in Cousins as a free agent.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 6, 2022
I’m willing to bet Cousins hadn’t even hit the showers by the time this news broke, if he even got this news from the team or his agent.
In 16 games as a Buck, Boogie averaged 8.7 PPG, 5.5 RPG, and 1.1 APG on .455/.244/.824 shooting. He played 16.7 minutes per appearance and started 5 contests. These aren’t amazing numbers by any means and he was certainly inconsistent, seemingly chasing every good game with a bad one, followed by a good one. He also rarely wasn’t in foul trouble, averaging a career-high and stupefying 6.1 per 36 minutes. Still, he provided solid production and one that any backup big in a limited role would be proud of, let alone the Bucks signed barely over a month ago for the league minimum.
This reduces the roster to 14 players ahead of the league-wide guarantee date of January 10th, when Boogie’s salary would have been on the books and factored into the Bucks salary cap—and luxury tax bill—for the entire season. If teams want their players to be off the books in time to avoid payment, they need to clear waivers by the 10th and thus need to be waived by the 7th. We might have to keep an eye on Wesley Matthews now.
Speaking for myself, this comes as a shock. I’m sure it does to many Bucks fans too. With Brook Lopez out indefinitely recovering from back surgery, Bobby Portis stepped into the starting center role and has performed admirably. Now, behind him and Giannis there is only two-way Sandro Mamukelashvili in the big man rotation on a full-season contract. Luke Kornet (who has not yet made an appearance as a Buck) and Javin DeLaurier (played just under 3 minutes so far) remain on the roster. which is back to being worryingly thin in the frontcourt.
If Jon Horst does intend to use the flexibility granted by an open roster spot, you have to imagine it will be on a center. It will be tough to replace Boogie’s offensive production with a free agent, however modest. Hopefully, Horst has an upgrade in the works. If not, this one is a head-scratcher. Unless something else is in the works here...
Ersan Ilyasova is no longer with Bulls after his 10-day stint featured a protocols stay, per Bulls PR.— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) January 5, 2022