Pump Fake: The Pelicans Extend Jrue Holiday

On Sunday, Shams Charania announced that they extended their veteran guard, Jrue Holiday, to a 4 year, 160 million dollar extension. The fourth year of the deal includes a player option. Shortly after the deal was announced, Jrue Holiday took to Twitter and stated that he will be “A Buck for Life.” This deal affirms how the Bucks are all in on the two-way guard considering how the Bucks traded away Bledsoe, Hill, Hampton, two pick swaps, and two future first-round picks. At the time, many fans and analysts viewed this package as an overpay for a guy who has only made one All-Star game in his career. Holiday has averaged a respectful 17 points with 5.4 assists and 4.6 rebounds, not accounting for his play at the defensive end. Ever since Holiday recovered from Covid-19, the UCLA alumn has picked up his play and averaged 19 points within the past two weeks. The extension comes on the heels of Holiday dropping 33 to lead the Bucks to a win. Holiday’s presence certainly adds value to the Bucks, but the financial side of the deal comes into question.

There is no question that the Bucks have been one of the premier teams in the Eastern Conference the past few years, but have severely underperformed come playoff time. This move to extend Holiday demonstrates that the Bucks are all-in on a core that includes Giannis, Jrue, and Khris. If the Bucks win a championship with that core then the moves would have obviously paid off, but it is going to be a challenge considering the Nets have built a super-team in Brooklyn. That Brooklyn core is not going away anytime soon, so paying Holiday more than 80 million when he is 34 and 35 does not make any sense. At that age with that amount of money tied into him, no trade suitors will be available. As much as I love players that represent UCLA, I do not agree with giving Holiday that much money.

Email Ryan at rrm232@cornell.edu with any questions!

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