The Brooklyn Nets have parted ways with center Tyler Zeller, trading him to the Milwaukee Bucks for third-year guard Rashad Vaughn and a 2018 second-round pick, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
Brooklyn is trading Tyler Zeller to Milwaukee, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 5, 2018
The Nets will receive Milwaukee's Rashed Vaughn with the second-round pick, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 5, 2018
Bucks needed more in the center position
The Bucks have added depth in the center position with the addition of Zeller. In 42 games this season, the 28-year-old center is averaging 7.1 points, 4.6 rebounds, on 16.7 minutes per game. He is also hitting his shots at a decent percentage, shooting 54.6 percent from the field.
Milwaukee's current starter at center is John Henson and Thon Maker serving as backup. However, Zeller may overtake the backup role because of Maker's struggles. Statistically speaking, his averages aren't great. He is averaging 4.7 points, 3.5 rebounds on 17.9 minutes per game. He isn't shooting the well either, shooting a poor 39.4 percent from the field and making 31 percent of his three-pointers (22-for-71). However, this is only Maker's second year in the NBA and just needs more time to develop.
On a side note, Zeller and Henson will be reunited with both playing their college careers as Tar Heels at the University of North Carolina.
Nets working through draft and developing players
For Brooklyn, they got what they wanted out of Zeller, which is a protected second-round pick via Phoenix Suns from the Eric Bledsoe trade earlier in the season. However, if the pick is not conveyed this year then it becomes an unprotected pick in 2020, according to Wojnarowski.
Sources: Milwaukee's 2018 second-round pick to Nets is protected 31-to-47, or Milwaukee sends unprotected second in 2020 if the pick doesn't convey in 2018.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 5, 2018
Getting rid of Zeller also gives rookie center Jarrett Allen the starting center role with third-year big man Jahlil Okafor who will serve the backup center role.
Vaughn was added in the trade to make work financially but that shouldn't be overlooked by what Vaughn could be in the coming years. He hasn't played much in the NBA, averaging 3.1 points, 1.2 rebounds, on 12.3 minutes per game over his three-year career, but there sure is room to grow on this Brooklyn Nets team.
A look ahead
The Bucks have been very busy since this season started with the Bledsoe trade, the firing of their head coach in Jason Kidd just a few weeks ago, Malcolm Brogdon going down with a torn quad injury, and now, this trade to add depth at the center slot.
The only question remaining for both teams is if they will make more moves from now to the trade deadline, which is this Thursday.
The Bucks are currently tied with the Indiana Pacers for fifth in the Eastern Conference with a record of 29-23 and the Pacers are 30-24. The Nets are tied with the Chicago Bulls for the 12th place in the conference with a record of 19-35 and the Bulls are 18-34.