Hey, it’s me.
I’m back and deeply grateful to Kyle for having kept the MMMR alive while I was gone. Go figure, I head abroad for roughly three weeks and one of the most consequential trades in franchise history happens. Thankfully, the column continued thanks to my friend’s efforts and your readership. Let us pick up where you all left off: The new guy.
Selfishly, the Damian Lillard trade will be of immense benefit to me personally. Two reasons for that:
- “Guy does dribble move, scores from the logo” is much easier to analyze than “guy uses on-ball pressure, body control, and precise timing to disrupt possessions within a wider team defensive concept.” (sorry, Jrue)
- I’ll never hurt for at least one “national” “media” “article” to post here again
There has been a tendency in some circles to inexplicably dismiss the competitive level change Dame brings to Milwaukee. His profile is gigantic — about as large as one can be without having won a title — and easily outshines every Buck not named Giannis from the past decade. His offensive skillset will be unlike anything we’ve seen from a lead guard, at least in the 21st Century. From the outside looking in, his mindset and approach to being a professional athlete seem an exact match with our lead superstar.
Maybe the idea of Damian Lillard being a Milwaukee Buck of all things was too difficult for minds outside this fanbase to comprehend. Instead of celebrating it, the first reaction is to dismiss it as a sort of impossibility. It isn’t really Dame in Milwaukee; it is a guy who looks remarkably like him, but can’t possibly be the same guy who we all accepted as the originator of being able to tell time on your wrist.
Regardless, I think we’re in for a real treat. Basketball is entertainment, and the Bucks now feature two of the most entertaining individuals to have ever played the game. Exactly the right move at the right time for a team that needed a shot in the arm.
The beauty of Wisconsin and the wider Midwest is that there is enough demand to support not just one local meat purveyor, but numerous meat purveyors. I personally come from a Johnsonville family, although my purchases of their goods have gone down significantly since they made the erroneous and ultimately self-defeating decision to rebrand, “Cheddarwursts” as, “Beddar with Cheddar Brats” or whatever asinine crap some know-nothing suit came up with.
69 (nice) words on Johnsonville brats. Looks like I’ve still got my fastball.
Damian Lillard, Giannis Antetokounmpo ‘have an opportunity to do something great’ with Milwaukee Bucks (Andscape)
A long interview worth your time. Lillard seems very similar personality-wise to a lot of great guys who have come through the organization the past decade or so. That another thoughtful individual will be representing Milwaukee to the rest of the world is a wonderful thing.
Giannis Antetokounmpo Presser | 10.7.23 (Bucks YouTube)
I honestly haven’t had a chance to watch this, but I’ve seen encouraging comments from readers and listeners elsewhere on the internet. After the somewhat dour visage Giannis chose to wear after the latest playoff collapse and throughout the summer, it is great to hear his voice almost vibrate with excitement.
Yes and no. It would seem to me that teams are starting to be more cautious about throwing themselves into superstar trade sweepstakes with both feet. Also, in the Dame case, there was a unique combination of a Portland GM that had no real attachment to the player, a desired-for destination that figured it would win with a middling offer just because, and a competing offer from a Bucks team that likely felt a ton of pressure to get something of this magnitude done.
Bucks’ massive trade for Damian Lillard puts NBA on notice & Bucks boast plenty of offense with Damian Lillard, but what about defense? (NBA.com) & Damian Lillard, new head coach Adrian Griffin each start to carve niche with Bucks (Yahoo)
A bunch of articles all in similar veins tackling the consequences of Lillard’s arrival in Milwaukee. I’d dive into each, but we’re already 800 words and eight articles deep. I’ll be keeping an eye on the space between Adrian Griffin’s rep as a defensive mastermind now that he finds himself the coach of a team which is far more gas than brakes, at least on paper.
Brewers vs. Bucks: Comparing the AmFam Field and Fiserv Forum stadium deals (Milwaukee Record)
Posted for curiosity’s sake more than anything else as Milwaukee looks to continue supporting two relatively massive infrastructure projects. And consider this your occasional reminder that Herb Kohl dropped $100 million on the Forum to do his damndest to keep the Bucks in town.
Know Your Enemy
Memphis Grizzlies - Bluff City Media - Grizzlies Outpace Pacers in Preseason Overtime Thriller
- Reminder that the Grizzlies are going to be in a weird place with Ja Morant suspended for 25 games to start the year (assuming he doesn’t fall into more shenanigans in the meantime/when he returns). Can a franchise that went from plucky underdogs to hate villains in the course of a few months turn the page yet again?
Los Angeles Lakers - Silver Screen & Roll - Can Christian Wood crack the Lakers’ ‘circle of trust?’
- In all likelihood, no.
The Social Media Section
God truly has forsaken us
Bucks city jerseys leaked— (@34for2) October 6, 2023
(Via/ Marjon IG live) pic.twitter.com/gVy98KXBlK
Idk if eating enough bags of chips to get himself out of Phoenix and then getting a one year deal truly counts as “redemption”, but if he remembers how to play ball, we’re cool
REDEMPTION IS NOT IN PERFECTION.. THE REDEEMED MUST REALIZE THEIR IMPERFECTIONS.! pic.twitter.com/WeIrm3brxG— JAE CROWDER (@CJC9BOSS) October 6, 2023
Buck great Chris Copeland joins Buck great Beno Udrih’s staff in Oshkosh, among others (Joe Wolf also doing another go-around with the team)
Exceedingly uncommon The Truth W
Prayed to live in times like these
The comments are, predictably, insane lol
Marques Johnson stays winning. Another season in the booth for the GOAT.
Preseason hoops continues apace this week with two games on deck. First, we’ve got a visit to the Memphis Grizzlies this Tuesday, then a trip to the West Coast to play the Lakers on Sunday. Instead of predicting whether the Bucks will win or lose, let’s guess whether Giannis/Khris/Dame will play in either game. Don’t be surprised to see all three sit out the Grizz game, but stay equally nonplussed when Giannis and Dame make their first appearance as a duo against the Lakers for what has the potential to be one of the preseason games of all time.
It is good to be back, and as always, thanks for reading!