The Milwaukee Bucks were expected to do plenty of spending this offseason in order to keep their 60-win team intact. It appears they are willing to pay a heavy price to keep one of their own in swingman Khris Middleton.
There had been plenty of speculations regarding Middleton's future in Milwaukee. Now, according to ESPN NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, both sides have agreed to a lucrative five-year, $178 million deal.
Once free agency opens at 6 PM, All-Star Khris Middleton plans to return to the Milwaukee Bucks on a five-year, $178M contract, league sources tell ESPN. The deal is expected to include a player option on final year.
This is certainly a steep price to pay for Middleton. Milwaukee has already signed point guard Eric Bledsoe to a $70 million extension to keep him around through the 2023 campaign, and recent reports suggest they are hoping to potentially sign center Brook Lopez to a four-year deal worth up to $52 million. The Bucks' moves are indicative of their willingness to keep this team together for the foreseeable future.
Middleton is coming off a career-year in Milwaukee. The former second-round pick averaged 18.3 points on 44.1 percent shooting while hitting 37.8 percent of his 3-point attempts. He also tacked on career-highs in rebounds (6.0) and assists (4.3) en route to his first All-star appearance.
Middleton's production dipped in the postseason after averaging 16.9 points on 41.8 percent shooting in 15 games. Although they fell short of their goal for a championship at the hands of the Toronto Raptors, expectations still remain as high as ever. It is clear that the Bucks' brass feels Middleton will be an integral part of their success for years to come.