Bucks Re-Sign Khris Middleton

JULY 9TH, 12:30pm: The deal is official, the team announced.

“Khris played a huge role in our turnaround last season and has become a leader on our young team,” GM John Hammond said. “Keeping Khris in a Bucks uniform was a huge priority for us this offseason, and we’re thrilled that he’ll continue to grow with our young core as we work towards building a championship-caliber team in Wisconsin.”

9:46am: Milwaukee and the Mike Lindeman client indeed have an agreement, reports Jon Krawczynski of The Associated Press.

JULY 1ST, 2:28am: The Bucks and restricted free agent Khris Middleton are close to signing a new deal, Marc Stein of ESPN.com reports. The proposed arrangement will be for five years, and $70MM, Stein notes. The deal will include a player option for the fifth year, adds Stein. Milwaukee had tendered Middleton a qualifying offer worth $2.275MM, and would have had the right to match any offer sheet the forward were to sign with another franchise.

Courtesy of USA Today Sports Images

Courtesy of USA Today Sports Images

It doesn’t come as a shock that Middleton will return to Milwaukee, as the Bucks were set to match any offer sheets for the restricted free agent, according to a previous report by Stein. The ESPN scribe had pegged the degree of certainty that Middleton would be back with the Bucks in 2015/16 as a 10 on a scale of 1 to 10. Retaining Middleton and signing a big man in free agency are Milwaukee’s top two offseason priorities, Stein adds (via Twitter).

Middleton’s proposed deal would be for less then the league maximum, but not by much. A league executive had told Sean Deveney of The Sporting News that the young forward would draw an offer of around $15MM annually, with the max being an estimated $15.8MM for a player with his experience level, while another executive told Gery Woelfel of the Journal Times that he doubted Middleton would command that amount, and estimated the 23-year-old would only receive $9MM per year on his next deal. Deveney’s estimation was closer, with Middleton’s average annual salary on the pact coming in at approximately $14MM per season.

In 79 appearances this past campaign, including 58 as a starter, Middleton averaged 13.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 2.3 assists in 30.1 minutes per night. His career numbers are 11.8 PPG, 3.8 RPG, and 2.0 APG, with a shooting line of .453/.403/.858.

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