PJ Tucker is returning to Milwaukee this Friday after winning the 2021 NBA championship with the Bucks. He played a key role in their championship run, defending the best players on the other team to help the squad win the title.
Now, he will face the Bucks with his new team, the Miami Heat, after surprisingly leaving the franchise in the offseason. Some could think he holds grudges after the team didn't re-sign him, but Tucker made it clear he has nothing but love for Milwaukee and his fans.
Talking about his exit from the team and the reaction from fans, PJ said he was surprised when fans showed him their appreciation after a magical run.
“Hey, listen – you know what surprised me the most is how many fans are reaching out on e-mail, DM, everything, comments, talking about coming to the game,” Tucker said in an interview with the Journal Sentinel. “It’s really ... that part was the part that made me think back and really think about it even before I talked to you. Because you can’t, like, you can’t make that up. Guys go play for teams and win and people don’t care. People could care less. And I know that for a fact.
“For the love I still get, even though I’m on an opposite team who their guys will battle this year and to still get that love, that’s what I’m saying about my experience in Milwaukee that nobody will ever understand: As short as it was, it couldn’t have been any bigger.”
Even though his tenure at Fiserv Forum was short-lived, he holds the best memories from his time in Wisconsin. He'll never forget that and will always love the city and those who supported him last season.
“I’ll always love Milwaukee,” he said. “I’ll love the people of Milwaukee forever. They embraced me so much from day one when I first got there to the day I left; they were always there, they always had my back. That’s not something you get right away. You don’t normally get the trust and the love of the city so fast. It was an amazing experience and journey.”
The Heat travel to Milwaukee trying to worsen the Bucks' situation. They lost to the Toronto Raptors recently, ending a 7-game winning streak. This will be a duel between the 4th (Bucks) and 5th (Heat) team in the East, so fans better prepare for an electrifying match.
One imagines PJ will receive that love from Bucks fans, but that will change when the game starts.