One of the many factors the Bucks considered in making the three-team trade on draft night with Charlotte and Sacramento was that in Stephen Jackson and Beno Udrih, they would be acquiring a couple players with championship rings.
Jackson was a member of the Spurs' team that defeated Jason Kidd, Kenyon Martin, Richard Jefferson and the New Jersey Nets in six games for the 2003 championship. Udrih was with the Spurs when they defeated the defending-champion Detroit Pistons in seven games for the 2005 title, and when they swept LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers for the 2007 championship.
And while that doesn't mean that Jackson and Udrih will turn the Bucks into instant title contenders, having that kind of championship experience in the locker room definitely won't hurt the cause.
"I learned how to be a professional (in San Antonio)," said Jackson during his introductory press conference Wednesday at the Bradley Center. "Playing with David Robinson, Tim Duncan, and Danny Ferry, those guys showed me the business of basketball. How to approach games, how to approach practice and film and how to get prepared for games.
"I think that's the reason I was able to have success in my career so far. Those guys definitely showed me how to be professional in this league and I think it's helped me be a leader."
Jackson started 58 games for the 2002-'03 Spurs and averaged 28.2 minutes and 11.8 points which was third on the team behind Duncan (23.3) and Tony Parker (15.5). He started all six games and averaged 10.3 points in the NBA Finals, and sank 3 threes and scored 17 points in the Spurs' series-clinching victory in Game 6.
Udrih played more in his first championship season with the Spurs than he did in the second, but he said that even by just observing in San Antonio, he learned how important the "little things" were to a successful team. Such as?
"The character of the players," said Udrih. "Awareness. Everything matters. I think sometimes little stuff makes a team better more than the big stuff.
"I learned in San Antonio when I was playing there…I was able to observe things and just learn how a team basically should play. The last couple years, defensive mentality was winning championships. And team mentality.
Trade has a nice ring to it
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel | Jun 30