Bucks president Peter Feigin impressed upon bickering local and state government officials to wrap up a deal within the next 10 days to secure the public’s $250MM share of financing for a $500MM new arena for the team in Milwaukee, reports Don Walker of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Without an arena, “the Bucks will be gone from the state of Wisconsin,” Feigin warned. Realistically, groundbreaking must take place by early this fall so that the arena remains on schedule to beat an NBA-imposed deadline, as Feigin told Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com for a story this weekend. Sources told Windhorst the NBA would indeed exercise its right to buy the franchise and seek to move it if construction doesn’t begin soon.
Here’s more out of the Eastern Conference:
- Despite the upgrade Tom Thibodeau would provide as coach, the Magic should pass on the longtime Bulls coach if it required the team to surrender its first round draft pick as compensation, Brian Schmitz of The Orlando Sentinel opines. Orlando previously traded for Stan Van Gundy, sending the Heat a second-rounder back in 2007 in return for the coach, Schmitz notes.
- 2014 second-rounder Jerami Grant turned out to be one of the Sixers‘ biggest surprises this season, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes. An undersized power forward in college, Grant adapted well when the team moved him to small forward, Pompey adds. “Whatever position they put me at, I think I will be fine with it,” Grant said. “But in the offseason, I’m definitely going to work on a lot of things that a four-man can do and what a three-man can do. I’m just going to work on my overall game.” In 65 games this season Grant averaged 6.3 points and 3.0 rebounds in 21.2 minutes per contest.
- Dwyane Wade isn’t in a rush to make a decision regarding his player option worth $16,125,000, Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press writes. The veteran also indicated that the 2015/16 campaign isn’t likely to be his last in the league, Reynolds adds. “I don’t sit on my hands,” Wade said. “Obviously, everything’s about life after [basketball] and seeing what you want to do as well. So this is a perfect time to figure it out. I signed my deal the way I did for a reason … and the organization did it for a reason. It’s my option. I’ll decide when the time is right. Everyone knows I always try to do what’s best for the organization, but I also have to do what’s best for Dwyane Wade as well.” This conflicts with earlier statements from Wade that he intended to opt in for next season.
Chuck Myron contributed to this post.