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All season I have been telling fellow Bucks fans that this team will be a playoff team next season. With a top 10 draft pick this offseason, and over $20 million dollars in capspace, it seems as though we are going to have some excitement heading into next season......Take a look at how our depth chart will look next season, and my recommendations:

At the Point Guard position, if TJ Ford can come back, even at 80%, him and Mo Williams will be a great 1-2 punch at the point guard position. Having 2 point guards that are capable starters is very valuable; look at the Pistons last year with Chauncey Billups and Mike James....we have both TJ and Mo locked up under contract for at least 2 seasons, and own the Bird Rights for both, making it easier to re-sign them.

At Shooting Guard, we really need to use some of our capspace to re-sign Michael Redd...I don't think he deserves a max-contract, but with the way player values are inflated nowadays, he could get max offers from elsewhere. If we do re-sign Michael, which I think we will, we will have an all star quality, 23 ppg scorer. I would like to see us upgrade our depth at SG, because Reece Gaines is just not going to cut it...we need someone that we can rely on to give us 10-15 minutes a night.

At Small Forward, Desmond Mason could be an allstar in the future...all he has to do is stay consistent...I think he is going to get even better next year, even moreso if TJ can come back. With TJ in the mix, there is no ceiling on what Mason can do....as for depth behind Dez, Kukoc might return for another year, and that wouldn't be that bad...he is a solid veteran with a good attitude and would help all the young players on the team....

Power Forward has been a rollercoaster ride all season....some nights Joe Smith flashes the talent that made him the #1 overall pick last year, and some nights he just disapears....with only 2 years left on his contract, Joe could be traded....this could be the position that we draft, whether it be Chris Taft, Charlie Villanueva, or whoever....I think that a Joe Smith/Rookie platoon would be good, but I also think that Zaza Pachulia should get more minutes next year at PF...the Smith/Pachulia platoon hasn't been that successful this season, but with a year of experience under Zaza's belt, it could be better next year if that is what it comes down to.

The Center position is in desperate need of another quality player. Usually the Bucks get dominated by opposiong frontlines, and usually it is because we don't have a big center underneath the basket. Dan Gadzuric is really starting to show his worth, and could be a long term solution at center, but I personally would like to see him come off the bench for a 15-20 minute role. He just isn't big enough to bang with the Shaq's, Eddy Curry's and Jermaine O'Neal's for a whole game. If we can get a legit Center in free agency, **cough** Tyson Chandler **Cough**, that would be a very solid platoon for now and the future. Or, we could use our high pick to draft a Sean May or Fran Vasquez to help out Gadz....

My ideal depth chart going into next season would be:

PG: TJ Ford/Maurice Williams
SG: Michael Redd/Ed McCants (would be a great 2nd Round Pick!!)
SF: Desmond Mason/Toni Kukoc
PF: Stromile Swift (FA)/Joe Smith/Zaza Pachulia
C: Dan Gadzuric/Sean May(1st Round Pick)/Calvin Booth


This team would be a young, fast, and exciting team to watch...We finally would be solid upfront with the depth to be able to contend with other good frontlines in the East....with the signings of Swift and the draft picks, we sill would have around 10 million in capspace for future dealings....

So, my question to you is, do you think the Bucks will conted for a playoff spot next year, and if so, what will the key moves in the offseason be?
 

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Re: Can the Bucks contend NEXT season?

with tj ford, yes. without him, no.

it's as simple as that.

that would be a scary team if they sign swift. sign swift, draft taft, and that team would just run up and down the court(with ford). i hope he comes back.
 

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I think our #1 priority is to sign Michael Redd. I wouldn't give him a max contract but something close enough to it to convince him to play here. With the extra money we would save by not paying him the max contract we could attract players to surround him with. As for the draft, we should draft the best available player no matter the position they play when it is our pick. Then we can build around that draft choice (or use it to obtain someone through a trade) and Michael Redd. I would keep Mo Williams and Desmond Mason without question. If we can get something for the following players I'd do it, otherwise I'd keep them: Dan Gadzuric, Joe Smith (and I really like him) and even ZaZa Pachulia (but with ZaZa it would have to be someone who we think would outperform ZaZa). I'd look to unload Daniel Santiago, Erick Strickland, Anthony Goldwire, Marcus Fizur and Calvin Booth. As for Toni Kukoc I'd keep him even though he'd be used sparingly. If we can work with Reece Gaines in the summer to see his potential we can make a decision on him prior to the season starting. And of course the unknown factor is TJ Ford. If he can play at 80% or more he should start. Anything less, he can back up Mo until he's improved. And as previously stated, if the best player in the draft is a Point Guard...take him. Doesn't hurt to have three if TJ is returning. If TJ doesn't, than we are set at point guard. Bottom line, whether through free agency, trades or draft (or all three) we need at least one player (more would be a dream) that can make a dramatic difference in our team (playwise and image) immediately next year. If we fail, at least it shows fans the Bucks are trying to improve. If we make it a longer term plan to improve fans may not see that and assume we are content with our record.
I'm optimistic about next year and what Larry Harris will do for us. I'd also keep Terry Porter. If he is given some talent to work with let's see what he does. If he doesn't do much with it, than we can look for a replacement; even can do that mid-season.

And I'm undecided on who is coming up in the draft that would be good.
 

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What this team really needs is defense. If they can get their defense together and have TJ Ford come back and play like he did before he got injured then I can see a possible spot in the playoffs for you guys.
 

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Lets break down the probable playoff teams for next year:

Miami - should be a lock with Shaq and an improved Dwade.

Detroit - another obvious lock

Indiana - With a full strength roster they will compete for the East title.

New Jersey - I think they are solid playoff team when they get RJ back. They will be scary at the 1-3 spots with Kidd, Carter, and RJ.

Washington - a good team this year that should only get better with improvements from Hughes, Arenas, and maybe Kwame will decide to play ball one of these days.

Bulls - They are a solid playoff team this year with a very young team. All of their core players should get better, so I see them as a playoff team next year.

Cavs - Bron will carry this team to the playoffs along with Big Z.


That leaves Philly, Toronto, Milwakee, Celtics, Orlando, fighting for the last spot. I don't see the Celtics missing the playoffs, they could actually win their division. Then you have Philly if Iggy improves, orlando with an improved Dwight . . . I think you guys could be solid next year but honestly I don't see you beating out any of the top 8 teams for a playoff spot unless there are some injuries to those teams key players.
 

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I think they have a chance. There are going to be a few spots that I'd assume are up for grabs. It depends how things go this offseason depending on how much of a chance there is.

Should Redd leave and/or Ford not come back, thats gonna really hurt the bucks chances. But people can leave other teams and that would make more openings, such as if Z leaves the cavs. That being said, they've got a chance.
 

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I suppose they have a chance but i would be looking for it in 2 seasons time.
 

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based on pure talent i wouldnt see why not. I dont think TJ can comeback and be his normal self but Williams is a suitable replacement. If Redd is back i think there is a nice core with him, Mason and Gadzuric (gotta represent my Bruins). The East will be getting stronger and stronger though. Shaq will still be around next season, New Jersey will be improved, Indiana will definitely not go through another season like this, Philly will probably gel more, Orlando will improve with Howard and Nelson getting better and Hill healthy again. And thats only to name a few. With a top 8 pick most likely, a stud in the draft can go a long ways. Unfortunately i dont think Milwaukee has the front office and the coaching needed to win.
 

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Yes, we of course need to re-sign Mike Redd, Dan Gadzilla, and Zaza Pachulia. I also thinkwe need to re-sign Toni. Before that go out and sign Stromile Swift. Trade down our pick and draft a Fransisco Garcia, Hakim Warrick, or Charlie Villaneuva. Draft hopefully Channing Frye in the 2nd round. Then I would be stocked with or without TJ:
C: Gadzuric/Frye/Booth
PF: Smith/Pachulia
SF: Garcia,Warrick,Villanueva/Kukoc
SG: Redd/Mason
PG: TJ (hopefully)/Mo/FA
Now if TJ isn't back then try to sign a bigger name PG but I love that team right there.
 

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7thwatch said:
Lets break down the probable playoff teams for next year:
New Jersey - I think they are solid playoff team when they get RJ back. They will be scary at the 1-3 spots with Kidd, Carter, and RJ.

Bulls - They are a solid playoff team this year with a very young team. All of their core players should get better, so I see them as a playoff team next year.

Cavs - Bron will carry this team to the playoffs along with Big Z.


That leaves Philly, Toronto, Milwakee, Celtics, Orlando, fighting for the last spot. I don't see the Celtics missing the playoffs, they could actually win their division. Then you have Philly if Iggy improves, orlando with an improved Dwight . . . I think you guys could be solid next year but honestly I don't see you beating out any of the top 8 teams for a playoff spot unless there are some injuries to those teams key players.
I disagree with these 3. NJ might be least I disagree with but until they got a solid PF and/or C I don't see them be solid quite yet. The Bulls are the ones I disagree with the most, Eddy Curry and Tyson Chandler are both playing great but you know it is also contract year. With having to sign these 2 they are going to be in cap hell for a LONG time. I just don't see them playing as good as they are now. Cavs have had to 2 years to make the playoffs with Bron and Big Z and they have had Boozer and now have Gooden. Now they also have to re-sign Big Z who is one of the top FA centers so who knows if the Cavs can even keep him.
 

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Mavs Dude said:
I disagree with these 3. NJ might be least I disagree with but until they got a solid PF and/or C I don't see them be solid quite yet.
They are not that far out of the race this year, and thats with huge injury problems this year. They have a rookie (Nestic or something like that) that is decent. With a healthy Kidd, Carther, and RJ, I think they will be in the playoffs. With spots 1-3 that good, they don't need stars in the frontcourt to make the playoffs. Gordon, Deng, Noce, Duhon will improve, and probably Curry, Chandler, and Hinrich as well. They will be better next year, not worse.

The Bulls are the ones I disagree with the most, Eddy Curry and Tyson Chandler are both playing great but you know it is also contract year. With having to sign these 2 they are going to be in cap hell for a LONG time.
What made you come to this conclusion? The bulls are set up very well cap wise, and will have no trouble re-signing Curry and Chandler. They are planning to do that AND be big players in the free agent market in 2006, when they have big contracts coming off the books. Salary cap hell my butt.

Cavs have had to 2 years to make the playoffs with Bron and Big Z and they have had Boozer and now have Gooden. Now they also have to re-sign Big Z who is one of the top FA centers so who knows if the Cavs can even keep him.
The Cavs will have cap room this summer. They can use it on Big Z or a guy like Redd. Bron will be even better next year (scary thought). Thats why I think they will make the playoffs.
 

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No matter which FA's the Bucks get, I doubt they'll make the playoffs unless Ford comes back. With TJ and maybe Stromile Swift, they could even advance to the semi-finals.
 

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7thwatch said:
The Cavs will have cap room this summer. They can use it on Big Z or a guy like Redd. Bron will be even better next year (scary thought). Thats why I think they will make the playoffs.
What if they lose Big Z? He is a UFA, he can sign wherever he wants. Also with Redd planning to stay in Milwaukee and Phoenix planning to match any offer to Joe Johnson, the main person they can go after is Ray Allen, who is asking for HUGE bucks. They are going to be in big trouble. I think Bron is great and everything but he can't be the only one leading that team. Even if they re-sign Big Z that is going to be their main signing. If they can't do anything now with this roster, how are they going to do any different next year?
 

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Hmm... it's the east.

They could nab a FA big man at the Skinner level. Gadzuric is productive and could produce more with more PT and fewer fouls.

Mo Williams is a good PG they can keep and draft a compliment player to Redd.
 

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Wait a minute DHarrisFan...I dont want this Bulls and Cavs crap! You asked about the Bucks and the first three posts I see are about the Bulls and Cavs! What gives? Not one reply is answering your thread! :krazy:
Maybe we need to moderate this...a bit. I dont mind other fans coming in here but this is a Bucks forum about Bucks discussion not the Bulls and Cavs the first and only thing I see... :dead: :whoknows:
Hell, the Bucks can beat them both next year if they make the right moves! The Bulls are playing over their heads...that surprise factor will not be there next year. But ask these people to comment on Bucks or leave...to their own boards.
That is what this thread is..."Do You see BUCKS making the Playoffs next year?" Is what you said...not Cavs or Pacers or Bulls!!!! :curse:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
MilBucksFan2TheCore said:
Wait a minute DHarrisFan...I dont want this Bulls and Cavs crap! You asked about the Bucks and the first three posts I see are about the Bulls and Cavs! What gives? Not one reply is answering your thread!
Maybe we need to moderate this...a bit. I dont mind other fans coming in here but this is a Bucks forum about Bucks discussion not the Bulls and Cavs the first and only thing I see...
Hell, the Bucks can beat them both next year if they make the right moves! The Bulls are playing over their heads...that surprise factor will not be there next year. But ask these people to comment on Bucks or leave...to their own boards.
That is what this thread is..."Do You see BUCKS making the Playoffs next year?" Is what you said...not Cavs or Pacers or Bulls!!!!
I agree with you, this is a Bucks thread, but the other teams in the conference affect our chances at making the Playoffs.....I would like more talk about OUR team, but it is not far off topic to talk about other teams when talking about the Eastern Conference playoffs.
 

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The Bucks have a minute chance to make the playoffs next year especially with the rising of othe rteams like the Bulls, Wizards, and Cavs. If the Bucks want to make the playoffs, they first of all have to resign michael redd and then and have to pick up a good solid low presence in the draft or free agency.
 
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MilBucksFan2TheCore said:
Mavs Dude we are actually talking about the Bucks next year...not the Cavs. This thread is not about Cavs!
Dude, we are talking about teams that the Bucks have to contend with so why are you complaining??!! I did post about the Bucks and then I argued with 7thwatch on the people he thinks will be ahead of us so it is talking about the Bucks not just directly. What's the problem anyways? You are taking the thing too seriously.
 

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Mavs Dude said:
If they can't do anything now with this roster, how are they going to do any different next year?
They are going to make the playoffs with this roster, and like I said they have signifigant cap room this summer. They will resign Big Z or possibly sign a few other good players. Even if the Cavs miss, I still don't see the Bucks beating out Boston, NJ, Indiana, Chicago, Detroit, Miami, Washington, or Philly. They would also have to contend with the Cavs, Orlando, and any suprise teams for a spot.

At this point I don't think either of us is going to change the others mind, so I'm going to drop it.
 
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