The Warriors and Bucks have completed a deal to send Andrew Bogut and Stephen Jackson to Golden State for Monta Ellis, Ekpe Udoh and Kwame Brown. Both teams confirmed the move today via press release.
After this season, Ellis is owed $11MM annually over the next two seasons, with an opt-out for the second year. Udoh is still in the midst of his rookie contract that will be guaranteed until he is eligible for a team option after the 2012/13 season. Brown and his $6.7MM salary falls into the deal as an expiring contract. Bogut is still owed a total of $27MM through the end of the 2013-14 season, and Jackson has one year remaining after this season that will pay him approximately $10MM. Each side of the deal totals about $21MM in 2011/12 cap figures, so neither club is adding or reducing salary for this season.
For the Warriors, dealing Ellis gives head coach Mark Jackson the opportunity to start rookie Klay Thompson at shooting guard and him more significant minutes to develop. The deal also hinges on the health of Andrew Bogut. If he can fully recover from a broken ankle suffered earlier in the season, Bogut becomes the mainstay at center for Golden State after Jackson experimented with Andris Biedrins and Udoh in the starting lineup.
Stephen Jackson returns to the team in which he had a tumultuous exit in 2009, but with reports of unhappiness in Milwaukee due to an irreparable relationship with coach Scott Skiles, he finds himself out of that situation. According to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports, sources say that the Warriors do not plan to buy out Jackson's contract (Twitter link).
The deal almost certainly takes the Warriors out of the running for both Dwight Howard and this year's playoffs. However, the short-term downgrade to the roster improves Golden State's chances of keeping its 2012 first-round pick, which will head to the Jazz unless it lands in the top seven.
Milwaukee receives a dynamic and explosive combo guard in Ellis, who had been averaging 21.9 PPG, 6 APG, and 1.5 SPG in 36.9 MPG. It will be interesting to see how Skiles handles the shots between Ellis and Brandon Jennings, as the Bucks traded two players that are not currently in the rotation for Ellis' 19 FGA (Jennings currently averages 17 FGA). Udoh, formerly picked by the Warriors with the 6th overall selection in 2010, is an intriguing prospect for the Bucks moving forward. Most importantly, it may help cover up the potential loss of forward Ersan Ilyasova to free agency, who recently said that he may leave the Bucks in the offseason for whoever offers the most money. It is questionable if Brown fits in Milwaukee's long term plans, as he is due to be out for the rest of the year while recovering from a chest injury and is slated to become a free agent this summer.