Time To Earn For Bucks’ Ersan

MILWAUKEE – Forward Ersan Ilyasova has been on a tear for the Milwaukee Bucks – enough of one, in fact, that there might be interest in him at the NBA’s fast-approaching trading deadline (though Ilyasova will be an unrestricted free agent come July).

The 6-foot-10 power forward from Turkey, still just 24, had averaged 17.1 points and 11.7 rebounds over his last 10 games heading into Milwaukee’s clash vs. Chicago Wednesday night at Bradley Center. He had an active streak of 25 consecutive games with at least one offensive rebound, and he had boosted his 3-point shooting from 29.8 percent last season to 37.3 percent.

A week before the All-Star Game, Ilyasova went for 29 points and 25 rebounds against New Jersey, just the third player in franchise history to log a 25/25 game. In 37 appearances, he had three games with at least 20 points and had led the Bucks on the boards 19 times, compared to four and 11 times respectively in 60 games last season.

Granted, there are more rebounds to be had, with Andrew Bogut out again. But Ilyasova is free of the concussion troubles that cost him 20 games last season and he has improved his focus on the glass and his overall play. It’s safe to say that Ilyasova -– a bargain playing near the end of a three-year, $7 milllion contract -– will get a big raise somewhere this summer, though he has a nice comfort zone in Milwaukee.

“He’s rebounded the ball at a great rate pretty much the whole season,” Bucks coach Scott Skiles said before Wednesday’s game. “And he doesn’t take as many ill-advised threes, and that’s had a very positive effect on his game. He’s gone from a 25-to-27 percent 3-point shooter to a plus-35 percent 3-point shooter in large part because he takes good ones now. He’s not running around searching for the line as so many guys do. If he finds it and he’s behind it and his feet are set, he lets it go. Otherwise … from 12-18 feet, when his feet are set, he’s a high-level shooter. He’s kind of found his areas there.”

Was it hard to sell Ilyasova on this more disciplined, higher percentage approach?

“No,” Skiles said bluntly. “He’s in his contract year.”


  1. tylor lopez says:

    He must go to a better team,Bucks is not enough for him.This guy is a real deal.

  2. ali says:

    he is always a good player, a team player. skiles just understand that. it is all about.

  3. M.Ray says:

    He is one of the most underrated players in NBA. He is very modest, tries to play for his team, and uses the ball only if he has a good opportunity. As a result players like Jennings waste many opportunities while trying to be “the man” while he silently waits his turn. I think it was his coaches’ fault to not use him effectively till now, they could have easily qualified to play-offs by now.

    Steve please find and watch his performance in his national team and Barcelona. He was the star of Turkish team in Word Championship where they got the second place (after USA) previous year and in Europe many teams are ready to pay comparable contracts to his current one! So, he is not trying to play better due to his contract year but poor Milwaukee just realized his capacity at the end of his contract period. If he had played with a guard like Nash or Parker, he’d have an average of near 20 pts all seasons.

  4. Zach says:

    Ers has started 19 games this season and has averaged about 33 minutes per game since the begining of February, playing no fewer than 25 minutes in each game since the 4th of February. Not to mention the 42 and 43 minutes he has played in each of his last two games, how many more minutes do you want Skiles to give him?!

  5. Henrik Larsen says:

    Ersan is most talented player in Bucks. He is strong and has rebound abilities and good 3P %. Skiles has to give much more minutes (regularly) to keep him. But they need at least 10 million $ for every year?

  6. Max says:

    When the team begins in 10th place in the East everyone looks down the bench at the coach. They look and wonder what the hell is he doing. He has all the pieces, now put them together.

    To read more go to http://www.nbathroughmyveins.wordpress.com

  7. Abuzer Adelman says:

    Ersanity baby! For me, Ilyasova has now definitely proven that he is the real deal. Knocking down 3s, grabbing offensive rebounds, scoring, and even blocking shots, the guy is a stud and deserves to play for a much better team than the below-average systemless Milwaukee Bucks. If he can put up these kind of numbers playing for a mediocre team like the Bucks, imagine what he could to playing for a decent ball club.

  8. can Demir says:


  9. if im the milwaukee bucks, i would be doing everything i can keep to ersan unless an offer comes up that they cannot refuse (ie. a trade for someone like lamarcus aldridge)..or for salary cap issues….hes only averaged around 12 and 9 this season, but over his last 10 games, hes put up 18 and 12…thats a guy thats on a hot streak, and you want to keep guys like that on your team because who knows when the streak ends..for ersan, it doesnt look like its going to end any time soon…plus, i think that MIL already has the starting pieces to put together a playoff run with brandon jennings and andrew bogut…their problem is their bench….they should be looking to trade someone like stephen jackson but dont trade ersan yet mindofmattman.blogspot.com

  10. çağatay says:

    first we have to accept that he is can be the most effective Turkish player who plays in nba. Because the Bucks have no system and ersan can survive there. If he plays for a team like Spurs, Bulls, Pacers and even Magic, he can show more. And maybe he can be part of a big deal i think. He can fit Gasol’s place well in a 3 team trade

  11. Marko says:

    He is 27 years old…

  12. kerem says:

    it s not because his contract year mr skiles.you jut started to let him play..he plays like this in Turkish national team all the time

  13. Cem says:

    Jennings and Ilyasova for D-12?

  14. charles says:

    He would be a better fit in NY than Amare Stoudamire. Between him and Chandler they’d get all the rebounds and they already have Carmello and Lin to do the scoring.