Milwaukee Bucks Fans Plead for Team to Tank

Alec NathanFeatured ColumnistNovember 27, 2013

Apr 21, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; Milwaukee Bucks fan Jamie Gill, of Milwaukee, waits for game one of the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Entering the 2013-14 season, the Milwaukee Bucks weren't considered a franchise that was looking to tank.

In fact, owner Herb Kohl said as much to Bleacher Report's Howard Beck in an interview earlier this month:

In our organization, there is this competitive need to be as good as we can every year, Bucks owner Herb Kohl told Bleacher Report. It’s an instinct. Even though one might argue that mathematically you’re better off going the other way.

However, at 2-11, the Bucks are doing their best tanking impression, and some fans don't want things to change. 

A campaign started by Bucks fans called recently cropped up, and the stated goal is to obtain $5,000 worth of funding "for the purchase of a high visibility billboard (s) to display for a four-week period in December." 

The purpose of the billboards? To encourage tanking and long-term prosperity. Here's a piece of the campaign's mission statement, according to the contribution page on Indiegogo:

One way to help change this approach is if the fan base can let the organization know that they will support a full rebuilding of the team under a new front office direction. This means being willing to part with high-priced journeymen veteran players and focus on building around young talent acquired with high draft picks.  The talent rich 2014 NBA draft is the place to start.  

The signs will read "Winning Takes Balls," and the slogan will be surrounded by images of coveted lottery pingpong balls. 

As of Wednesday night, Bucks fans had contributed $4,842 to the cause, which leaves them less than $200 short of their financial goal. 

And quite frankly, it's hard to disagree with the loyal Milwaukee fans. This franchise has been in basketball purgatory for years, and stocking up on high-priced veterans is no way to build a winner in the long term in a small market. 

In a weak Eastern Conference, the Bucks have been positively putrid, ranking 29th in offensive rating (96.5) and 28th in defensive rating (107.7) in their first season under the tutelage of Larry Drew, per Basketball Reference.