Per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (formerly of the Vertical), the Milwaukee Bucks have reached an agreement to re-sign guard/forward Tony Snell to a 4 year, $46 million contract, with $44 million guaranteed. The remaining $2 million are incentive based and Snell has a player option in the fourth year of the deal.
This marks newly minted Bucks GM Jon Horst’s first foray into free agency as a general manager and shows he is committed to bringing back the core of last year’s playoff team.
After last year’s salary cap explosion, players (such as Patty Mills) are signing to more reasonable deals this season. Considering 3-and-D wing players like Snell are hard to come by, the deal is palatable for both sides.
Still only 25, Snell came over in a trade for Michael Carter-Williams before the beginning of last season and enjoyed his best season as a pro, averaging per game career highs in points (8.5), assists (1.2), steals (0.7) and minutes (29.2). Most notably, Snell averaged a career high 40.6% from behind the three-point line despite taking a healthy 4.4 attempts per game. On a team somewhat bereft of shooters, Snell’s consistent accuracy from three was a huge boost for Milwaukee and helped space the floor for Giannis Antetokounmpo.
At 6’7″ with a wingspan a half inch short of seven feet, Snell has the prototypical length that Milwaukee craves for its defensive scheme. He routinely guards the opposing team’s best wing scorer, helping relieve Khris Middleton and Giannis of on-ball defensive responsibilities. Snell is a good fit in Milwaukee because he knows his role, seems to be a good locker room guy, has established chemistry with Giannis and Rookie of the Year Malcolm Brogdon, and is an above average shooter and defender. It rarely gets talked about, but he possesses some sneaky athleticism as well.
When Jabari Parker returns, it remains to be seen whether Snell will remain in the starting lineup or move to the bench in more of a sixth man role. Regardless, Bucks fans should get excited about a potential small ball lineup of Brogdon, Snell, Middleton and Parker with Giannis playing center.
After re-signing Snell, the Bucks are near the salary cap and will likely only be able to use the Mid-level or Bi-annual Exception to sign other players without going into the luxury tax.
Statistics courtesy of basketball-reference.com.