REPORT: Bucks to prioritize re-signing Brook Lopez in free agency
The Milwaukee Bucks saw their promising season come to a heartbreaking end on Saturday night when the Toronto Raptors defeated them in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The Bucks were up two games before losing the next four contests.
Now the team will use the offseason to regroup and weigh their options on upcoming free agents. According to ESPN’s Malika Andrews, aside from re-signing All-Star forward Khris Middleton, the Bucks will make retaining center Brook Lopez a top priority.
The Bucks likely will pay Middleton. After signing Bledsoe to a four-year, $70 million contract in March, retaining Brogdon would come with a hefty price that could send the Bucks into the luxury tax. Milwaukee also will need to choose among Mirotic, Hill and Lopez. It is unlikely that all three will be retained.
Re-signing Lopez, league sources said, is a priority.
Lopez had several great games for the Bucks in the playoffs, including his 29-point outburst in Game 1 of the conference finals. He also helped keep Milwaukee alive in Game 6, hitting one clutch basket after another. Bringing him back will be a wise decision for the team.
This season, Lopez averaged 12.5 points and 4.9 rebounds.
The Bucks were two wins away from advancing the NBA Finals, but their loss against the Raptors should not make them blow the roster up. The core of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Middleton, Eric Bledsoe, and Lopez should be kept intact if Milwaukee wants to continue what they’ve started.