Whether the Milwaukee Bucks will have a legitimate chance of retaining Ersan Ilyasova could be determined within the next three days.
I was told Saturday that Ilyasova, the Bucks’ talented young forward who is an unrestricted free agent, intends on meeting with Bucks owner Herb Kohl, probably on Tuesday.
Where Kohl and Ilyasova will meet isn’t known, and it also isn’t known if other Bucks officials or any of Ilyasova’s representatives will be in attendance.
While Ilyasova hasn’t been the happiest of campers the last two seasons and has had told some acquaintances that he is looking to move on to another team, he still has a good rapport with Kohl.
The Bucks have offered the 6-foot-10 Ilyasova a guaranteed five-year deal. It is believed to be worth from $35-40 million.
The Bucks aren’t the only team that covets Ilyasova’s services. Brooklyn, Cleveland, Toronto and San Antonio, among others, are courting him.
Some of the teams pursuing Ilyasova have even had discussions with the Bucks about a sign-and-trade, although none has obviously been to the Bucks’ liking.
Tolga Tugsavul, one of Ilyasova’s representatives, recently told The Journal Times that “We are looking for a better offer” than the ones presented by the Bucks.
Tugsavul, reached by phone in Turkey Saturday, said, “I can’t talk. There’s nothing I can say right now.”
Ilyasova, 25, is unquestionably one of the most sought-after free agents available. He averaged nearly a double-double — 13 points and 8.8 rebounds — in just 27.6 minutes per game.
Ilyasova thus became the first player to average at least 12 points and eight rebounds in fewer than 28 minutes since Portland center Arvydas Sabonis (14.5 and 8.1 in 23.8 minutes) during the 1995-96 season and Robert Parish (12.6 and 9.4 in 27.2) during the 1992-93 season. Both Sabonis and Parish are in the Hall of Fame.
ODDS AND ENDS: Former Bucks shooting guard Michael Redd is an unrestricted free agent and has drawn interest from several teams. Redd played for Phoenix last season and showed he was fully recovered from a serious knee injury. Phoenix and Chicago, which also seriously recruited him last year as a free agent, have Redd on their radar. ... It is highly unlikely unrestricted free agent Carlos Delfino will return to the Bucks. The Bucks seem set at the small forward spot with Mike Dunleavy and Tobias Harris. ... Look for power forward John Henson, the Bucks’ top pick in the recent draft, to sign a contract with the team early this week. Henson is expected to be in Milwaukee Sunday and work out in preparation for the upcoming NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. ... Bucks assistant coach Joe Wolf will assist Mike Fratello on the Ukraine National Team this summer. Jason Staudt, another Bucks’ assistant coach, will be an assistant coach for the Georgia National Team.