Ersan Ilyasova: I’m coming home


According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, The Milwaukee Bucks and free agent forward, Ersan Ilyasova have agreed to a 3-year $21 million deal. The Turkish Thunder last played for the Milwaukee Bucks during the 2014-2015 season. Needless to say, he’s always been a fan favorite.

Although this deal cannot be signed until after the NBA moratorium period is over, this seems like a solid deal for both Ilyasova and the Bucks. Ersan last played for the Philadelphia 76ers, where he averaged 10.9 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.3 assists per game while shooting 45.2% from the floor.

The two most important aspects that Ersan will immediately bring to the Bucks are shooting and rebounding.

Milwaukee desperately needs perimeter shooting, and Ilyasova, a career 36.6% three point shooter will bring it. From his previous years in Milwaukee, he has proved that he could stroke it from downtown. He shot a blistering 45.5% from behind the arch back in 2011-2012.

Another shooter will allow more room for Giannis Antetokounmpo to operate on the offensive end.

The Milwaukee Bucks ranked dead-last in the NBA in rebounding last season, grabbing only 39.9 boards per game. Night in, and night out, it seemed like the Bucks would get abused in the rebound department. However, with Ilyasova, he certainly fills a huge void the Bucks had.

For his career, Ersan averages 6 rebounds per game. Although that may not seem like a difference maker, it sure will be. He is very determined to grab rebounds and really likes to get his hands dirty on the glass. What I really love about the Turkish Thunder is his tenacity to go after rebounds.

Another underrated aspect of his game is how terrific he is at absorbing contact for charges. Ersan ranked 5th in all of the NBA in charges taken per-game, according to player hustle stats. It’s the little thing that matters, and plays like these will give the Bucks extra possessions.

He has also played in the postseason 5 years, contributing for various teams. More notably, he did a lot last season for the 76ers during their postseason run, averaging 9.3 points and 7.6 rebounds per game. A veteran with a good amount of postseason experience like Ersan is great for the locker room

A 3-year deal for a 31-year old may seem like a “typical Bucks” thing to do, but Ersan will provide a steady force of shooting and rebounding. Two things Milwaukee needed to address before beginning the 2018-2019 NBA season.

With the new deal, does this spell the end of Jabari Parker’s career in Milwaukee? Although it is only a $21 million deal, the Bucks are already very tight in terms of cap space as it is. This definitely puts a dent into any money the Bucks were thinking of throwing at Parker.


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