TODAY'S PAPER
73° Good Evening
73° Good Evening
SportsBasketball

Report: Ilyasova could head overseas

Milwaukee Bucks' Ersan Ilyasova, of Turkey, takes a

Milwaukee Bucks' Ersan Ilyasova, of Turkey, takes a shot during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game against the New Jersey Nets. (Feb. 19, 2012) Photo Credit: AP

Upcoming free agent Ersan Ilyasova will have options next season outside of the NBA, according to a report in the Milwaukee Journal Times.

Milwaukee Bucks writer Gery Woelfel writes that Ilyasova has offers from "five Euro teams" to play basketball next year.

The 6-9 Ilyasova, an unrestricted free agent in the summer, is in the midst of a breakout season. In 26 minutes per game, Ilyasova is averaging 11.0 points and 8.9 rebounds -- numbers that translate to 15 and 12 per 36 minutes -- and shooting 37.3 percent from three.

Ilyasova's minutes were also upped starting in February, and he's responded, averaging 14.9 points and 10.9 rebounds last month, and 12.3 points and 11.7 rebounds so far in March.

In my latest free agent rankings, Ilyasova fell 18th, in between JaVale McGee and Kevin Garnett.

The 24-year-old is your prototypical Euro-style big, thriving in the wing and from beyond the arc. Ilyasova has also demonstrated the ability to pile up rebounds: he scored 29 and pulled down 25 rebounds in a February game against the Nets, and has at least 15 rebounds in a game five times this year.

Woefel also discussed the possibility of Ilyasova being traded at the deadline. As he wrote, the Bucks already have big money committed to Drew Gooden (three more years at $6.7M/year) and Luc Mbah a Moute (three more years around $4.5M/year). Could they justify throwing more money at a forward? Or could they look to deal him before March 15, hoping to get something in return?

So far, the market for forwards is nowhere near as hot as it is for point guards and centers. Still, a team out of contention could try to make the move, re-sign Ilyasova, and insert him in as a starting forward for the future.

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

New York Sports