Michael Carter-Williams Rumors
Clearly, and understandably, Bucks officials are deeply concerned. That’s reflected in their ongoing discussions with other teams about potential trades before the deadline on Feb. 18. Based on conversations with several NBA execs from both the Eastern and Western conferences, the Bucks are more than receptive to playing “Let’s Make a Deal.’’ And that includes possibly moving Carter-Williams, who has been consistently inconsistent since joining the Bucks. Carter-Williams has had some dynamic games this season, like an 18-point, 13-assist outing against Sacramento and a 20-point, 12-assist showing against Chicago.
The pressing issue for Antetokounmpo and 24-year-old point guard Michael Carter-Williams — the 2013-14 Rookie of the Year whom Milwaukee acquired last season from Philadelphia — is to develop their shooting range. Antetokounmpo is attempting just 1.4 3-pointers (converting 26.1 percent) and Carter-Williams is down to 0.8 attempts (32 percent). “The Greek Freak” is averaging a career-best 15.3 points and he and Carter-Williams rank in the top 50 in drives to the basket. “I don’t think I can say it is my safer option,” Antetokounmpo said of his driving. “I think it is my strength. Coach wants us to play to our strength, so that’s what I try to do. I know sometimes I might be open but I don’t feel it — I don’t feel like I’m going to make this jump shot, so I don’t take it. Because if I don’t feel like I’m going to make it, (that’s when) I don’t make it. So I just try to play through my strengths.”
“Giannis is a good shot-blocker today, and he’s going to be a great shot-blocker,” Hammond said. “He can be an excellent defensive rebounder with his overall length and his ability to stay in front of people.” The Bucks aren’t finished filling out their roster, either. Another top 10 pick could be on the way in June. Five of their top six scorers in double-figures are 25 or younger, and it is not inconceivable that the continuing growth of Middleton and Carter-Williams transforms the team-minded Monroe into the Bucks’ No. 4 or No. 5 player — which would make them formidable.
Despite reports to the contrary, every move in the Hinkie era has been the product of vigorous internal debate. Hinkie had to sell the ownership group, led by Josh Harris, hard on dealing Michael Carter-Williams for a lightly-protected pick from the Lakers, sources say. People inside the organization aren’t sure how Colangelo’s presence will change that process, other than the obvious addition of a loud and respected voice. Harris has always been the hammer. It may be that if Colangelo and Hinkie clash, the winner will be the one who persuades Harris. It also may turn out that Harris develops a rapport with Colangelo, and Hinkie winds up ostracized — and eventually fired, in favor of Colangelo’s son, Bryan, the former GM of the Raptors and Suns. No one really knows yet.