The Milwaukee Bucks locked down defensive specialist, Larry Sanders, with a 4-year, $44 million contract extension on Tuesday. A deal the Bucks have been working on and got Sanders to agree with on Friday. Sanders, heading into his 4th year as a pro, averaged 9.8 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.8 blocks in just over 27 minutes per game last season. Larry carried an 18.77 PER as the Bucks finished 8th in the east last season.
“By combining his God-given ability with hard work and determination, Larry has developed into one of the top defensive players in the league,” Bucks general manager John Hammond said. “He is a very important part of what we are doing in Milwaukee, and we’re excited to announce his contract extension.”
With the departures of Monta Ellis, Brandon Jennings and J.J. Reddick, Sanders looks to be one of the few familiar faces in Milwaukee next season. The shot-blocking Sanders started in 55-games for the Bucks in 2012-13, and should look to see an increased role as a leader for them in 2013-14.
Of course, this deal doesn’t come without it’s own share of gambles. Sanders is not the scoring option that the Bucks will surely need next season, and raking in $11 million per season will leave the Bucks without a fairly large bit of cap space as they look forward. Sanders should provide them with a staggering defensive presence inside, as Milwaukee looks to continue building (or possibly tanking).
An early projected starting five for the Bucks will likely include new additions Brandon Knight and O.J. Mayo, Ersan Ilyasova, and John Henson to accompany Sanders. While their starting five doesn’t seem any less competent than the one they implemented last season, the cohesiveness of these new parts could pose problems in an increasingly tough Central Division.
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