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Recent NBA trade rumors revealed the most likely fate for Jae Crowder, who has been on the trade block for several weeks now.
The first meaningful trade of the NBA season often doesn’t happen until January, and that trade has an avalanche-inducing effect leading up to the trade deadline in February. This year, it seems as though the first trade of thew season will come before the end of November, and with that, we could see a dramatically different arms race in the trade acquisition space than we normally do.
Jae Crowder has yet to report to the Suns this year over frustration with his role. Phoenix has been adamant that Cameron Johnson is taking on a larger role and starting over Crowder, and with that, Crowder — who still can be of service to a competitive team — has asked for a trade.
Earlier this week, Jake Fischer reported that the Suns were close to finalizing a three-team trade centered around Crowder. That trade has yet to go through, but he spoke more on who the team poised to acquire Crowder is.
Milwaukee Bucks closing in on Jae Crowder
In response to the initial rumor which did not name a team, we mentioned that the most likely outcome was an Eastern Conference team acquiring Crowder. He still has value to a competitive team, so the Suns will want him out of the conference. Teams that are punching below their talent could use him to upgrade and get back on track, the Heat and Sixers fit that bill.
But the Celtics and Bucks who have looked like the two best teams in the East could also look to add a championship-level talent to their team early in the season. It looks like the Bucks are going that route.
Here’s what Jake Fischer said on his podcast, Please Don’t Aggregate This (sorry!):
“The only other thing I feel comfortable sharing, confident sharing is that people around the situation have said that Milwaukee is the most likely team to land [Crowder]. I can say that.”
Fischer went on to say that the Bucks have been scouring the league to see what Grayson Allen could get them back in a trade package, so that looks to be part of what the Suns would get in return.
The timeline here is interesting. Crowder has deep playoff experience over the last several years, going to the Finals in 2020 with the Miami Heat and then the following year with the Suns. Both teams were on the losing side, but his experience on winning teams is valuable for the locker room.
Crowder can still play, too, and brings a lot of value as a three-and-D player. An acquisition of this type is more of a trade deadline or buyout season one, though, so for this to go down this early in the season allows the Bucks an advantage. They can ensure the addition fits and works, and if it doesn’t, they have further opportunities this season to upgrade their roster.
The Bucks are 22nd in 3-point percentage and 26th in turnover percentage. Crowder shot 34.8 percent from beyond the arc last year (better than the Bucks are shooting on average) and forced 1.4 steals, which would be third-best on the Bucks per game this season.
Crowder would fit with most teams, but he’ll slot in nicely in Milwaukee if the trade goes through.