Former James Madison Memorial standout Wesley Matthews is coming home. Matthews, who ended last season playing for the Indiana Pacers, has agreed to join the Milwaukee Bucks. Matthews signed a one-year deal to join the Bucks who also signed former Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez today.
Matthews has long been one of the best role players in the NBA. He provides three-point shooting and stout man-to-man defense. Earlier in his career, Matthews made a name for himself by being one of the best on-ball defenders against superstar Kobe Bryant.
Matthews has battled injuries over the past few seasons playing for the Dallas Mavericks and New York Knicks, in addition to the Pacers. He averaged 12.2 points per game last season.
The Bucks also re-signed guard George Hill and forward Khris Middleton, as well as towering center Brooke Lopez. The Bucks were committed to keeping as much of the core together from a team that won a league-best 60 games in 2019. The team decided not to match the Pacers $85 million offer for swingman Malcolm Brogdon, but were able to get compensation from the Pacers for him in the form of a first round pick and two second round picks.
Yesterday marked one of the most whirlwind opening days to free agency in NBA history. The Golden State Warriors completed a sign-and-trade with the Brooklyn Nets in which 2-time league MVP Kevin Durant was traded to the Nets for All-Star guard and former Ohio State Buckeye D’Angelo Russell. Durant will be joined in Brooklyn by All-Star guard Kyrie Irving and former Knicks center DeAndre Jordan, who is one of Durant’s closest friends. The Warriors also lost swingman Andre Iguodala, who joined the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers have agreed to a trade that will send former Marquette star Jimmy Butler to the Heat. The deal is contingent on the two organizations finding a third team to help make the salaries match. At first, the Dallas Mavericks had agreed to be part of the trade in which they would receive guard Goran Dragic and the Heat would receive Butler, while guard Josh Richardson went to Philadelphia. Dallas has since backed out of that deal.
Meanwhile, All-Star guard Kemba Walker agreed to sign with the Boston Celtics who have also agreed to terms with center Enes Kantor. The Celtics needed Walker to replace the departing Kyrie Irving as well as backup guard Terry Rozier, who signed with the Charlotte Hornets.
There has been no word on the decision of Toronto Raptors superstar Kawhi Leonard. The 2019 NBA Finals MVP is reportedly meeting with the Los Angeles Clippers and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Clippers have maintained a lot of salary cap room for Leonard and have staked their entire offseason on his acquisition.