Atlanta Hawks guard Jeff Teague is probably not a happy camper right now. The restricted free agent signed a deal with the Milwaukee Bucks for four years, worth $32 million. Thanks to the collective bargaining agreement the Hawks had three days to match that offer and they exercised that right. So Teague will be playing in Atlanta now the next four years barring a trade.
The team matched the four-year, $32 million offer sheet from the Bucks on Saturday. The point guard, disillusioned with the progress of negotiations, signed the offer sheet on Wednesday. The Hawks had three days to match the offer and keep Teague in Atlanta at $8 million a season or let him go to Milwaukee. Teague would have been reunited with former Hawks coach Larry Drew.
Teague, a restricted free agent, said he expressed to general manager Danny Ferry of his desire to continue his career elsewhere. However, the Hawks gained the right to match such an offer after making Teague a qualifying offer prior to the start of the NBA’s free-agency period. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
The team is going to have to mend some fences here as Teague really wanted out. Apparently the Hawks had shown no interest in bringing him back and new Milwaukee Bucks coach Larry Drew really went out of his way to make Teague feel welcome.
Teague was excited about the opportunities in front of him in Milwaukee including playing with O.J. Mayo. He saw a team with a good group of young players and on the rise and really wanted to be a part of that.
“I’m definitely excited at the opportunity to come back to work with Larry Drew,” Teague said. “The Bucks have a good team, a young nucleus and guys that are ready to take the next step. I can help.”
“As a rookie you usually get attached to an assistant (Drew), and he was the guy,” Teague said. “Me being a point guard and he had played that position in the NBA, we talked about basketball and life.
“I’m nervous,” Teague said of the waiting game which will play out until Atlanta makes its decision. “I really want to be here. I thank Milwaukee for giving me this opportunity and taking a chance on me.”
The easiest way for Atlanta to fix the bad feelings is pretty simple and it’s not the old winning cures all. This kid obviously just wants to feel wanted so it’s time for the Atlanta front office to do some ass kissing.
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