The NBA trade deadline is this coming Thursday at 2 PM CST and the Milwaukee Bucks have been very active in talking with teams. In the latest report from Marc Stein (who over the weekend termed the Bucks as continuing to be “super aggressive” on the market), he reports that the Bucks and the Dallas Mavericks have had conversations centered around sending forward Grant Williams to Milwaukee and Bobby Portis to Dallas:
The Bucks and Mavericks have had exploratory discussions around a trade involving Bobby Portis and Grant Williams, according to @TheSteinLine.— Elisha Twerski (@ElishaTwerski) February 5, 2024
Stein did update the report to say that the Bucks are not willing to do just a one-for-one deal sending out Portis for Williams, and that more players (or perhaps teams) would have to be included in the deal:
The 25-year-old Williams came to the Mavericks in a sign-and-trade this past off-season on a four-year, $54 million deal. Williams is putting up similar numbers as his final season in Boston of 8.1 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game with a shooting line of .410/.373/.729.
Bucks fans certainly remember Williams’ notorious 7/18 performance from deep in Game 7 of the 2022 Eastern Conference Semifinals, which still stands as a record in terms of makes and attempts in a Game 7. He hasn’t since approached the heights of that 27-point outing in the season-plus, though, topping 20 points just five times in that span, even after becoming a full-time starter in Dallas. It’s eyebrow-raising that the Mavs are already exploring moving on from him, confirming some rumblings of recent months.
The idea of Williams as another defender to defend wings off the bench over Jae Crowder and Andre Jackson Jr. is certainly an interesting one. Allowing AJJ to develop while Williams and Crowder see rotation minutes would give the Bucks some more defensive versatility, plus some youth. It would hurt to lose a player who has fully embraced Milwaukee and the Bucks in Portis, not to mention losing a big capable of playing the 5 in favor of a 6’6” forward, although beefy.
We will keep you updated as we inch closer and closer to Thursday’s trade deadline.