Bobby Portis returned to the Milwaukee Bucks last summer on a two-year deal with a player option. His crucial role in the team’s NBA Finals wins hinted at the possibility of a more significant value this season. Portis was paid $4.4 million by the Bucks using non-Bird rights, which enabled him to establish early Bird Rights this year. The four-year, $49,000,000 deal Milwaukee reached with Portis was the largest using early Bird rights. Check out the top sports betting sites for betting on the NBA!
Portis played a record-breaking 59 games, scoring a career-high (14.6 PPG) and rebounding a new career-high (9.1 RPG) despite having Brook Lopez out for much of the season. Portis’ offensive versatility makes it an excellent match for Giannis Antotounmpo. Portis is a career 3-point shooter of 39% who shot 4.7 points per game last season. He provides space for Giannis and can also mash into the paint when Antetokounmpo’s center is on him.
The Bucks would be better off with Lopez starting the game and Portis taking the bench. However, it is possible that the younger Portis (27 years old) could take over for Lopez, who will be entering the last season of his contract. In that scenario, Portis’ contract is a good deal for a starting center.
Milwaukee’s only avenue for adding free agency to the minimum wage was the $6.5million taxpayer midlevel exception. This exemption is going to Joe Ingles, a longtime Utah Jazz wing. Ingles makes an excellent fit for the Bucks, coming off an ACL tear that ended his season on January 31.
Ingles’ return from ACL injuries takes about a year to heal. Milwaukee should not expect Ingles to be back until after the All-Star break. At that point, Ingles would function as a deadline addition, and the team wouldn’t have to give him up. Ingles’ ability to play the ball well will prove valuable for a team that relies on station-to-station basketball. He is probably the Bucks’ most skilled passer.
How much Ingles can contribute will depend on how much he loses at the defensive end of the court. He’ll be 35 in October. Milwaukee should have enough wing depth for Ingles’ absence. Any production he gives down the stretch will be a valuable, albeit costly, bonus.
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