The Milwaukee Bucks will have an interesting decision to make regarding Jabari Parker, a former No. 2 overall pick, this offseason.
Parker will become a restricted free agent and could be an attractive option for teams with cap space. While injury troubles have kept him from fully realizing his potential, he is still young enough to find his groove with a new franchise.
He recently spoke about his future with the organization that drafted him (via Washington Post):
“Honestly, it’s uncertain. I know that, just looking from afar, [the Bucks] will be fine. But I just have to see what’s going to happen with my future, and that’s uncertain. But I know for them, they’ll be fine regardless. They’ve been doing well.”
Parker is likely correct, as Milwaukee is primed for success with a star cornerstone in Giannis Antetokounmpo, a solid supporting cast and potentially a new head coach next season.
But it’s unclear if the 24-year-old will be part of the team’s long-term plan. ESPN’s Nick Friedell, who covered Parker when he was a high school star in Chicago, said he would not re-sign the forward if it were his decision.
Parker has excelled as the ballhandler in a pick-and-roll offense since he returned to the team from his most recent injury. Among those with at least as many opportunities on this play type, he ranks No. 2 overall in efficiency with 1.18 points per possession. He is shooting 22-of-34 (64.7 percent) so far this season when handling the ball during pick-and-roll chances, which is by far the most accurate in the league.
He has also been effective as a spot-up shooter and has been very good while in transition, too. He had been one of the better players in the league in transition before his injury as well.
The Bucks will be able to match any offer Parker receives once they extend him a qualifying offer. However, it’s unclear what they’re willing to spend in order to keep the forward.