Former basketball star Jon Leuer was traded from the Milwaukee Bucks to the Houston Rockets Wednesday in a deal involving several players and draft picks.
“I loved my time in Milwaukee and am grateful the Bucks gave me my first opportunity in the NBA,” Leuer wrote on Twitter this week. “I’m looking forward to being a Rocket!”
Milwaukee sent its first round pick (No. 16 overall) to Houston in the deal, which the Rockets used to select another Minnesotan in last night’s draft—Royce White, a product of Hopkins High School.
"We had no intention of moving Jon," Bucks General Manager John Hammond told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinal in a story appearing in yesterday’s paper. "The only reason we did it was because it was the only way to make the salary structure work to complete the deal."
Leuer played four seasons for the University of Wisconsin after graduating Orono High School in 2007. He was drafted by Milwaukee in the second round of last year’s NBA draft, but his rookie season was delayed due to a labor dispute between the NBA and the Players’ Association.
When the 2011-12 season eventually began on Dec. 26, Leuer saw floor time early and often. He averaged just under five points and 12 minutes per game while shooting better than 50 percent from the field and 75 percent from the free throw line.
“I want to thank the Bucks fans for all their support this year,” Leuer said. “Sad I won't be playing basketball in Wisconsin for the first time in five years.”
Leuer is currently back home in the Orono area and leading a summer basketball camp for kids in the gym he spent countless hours shooting hoops in during his childhood.
“It’s crazy having my own basketball camp in the gym I grew up playing I,” he said. “Man these kids at camp are funny. One kid does the Kevin Durant shoulder wiggle before every free throw.”
Leuer is scheduled to make just north of $750,000 in his sophomore season and will be an unrestricted free agent after next year.