Jennings open to Milwaukee return

The Milwaukee Bucks have made it known they want to re-sign free agent Brandon Jennings, and just hours before the free-agent period began, Jennings indicated the feeling is mutual.

When asked via email whether he wants to remain with the Bucks, the flashy point guard said his work in Milwaukee is not finished.

"I definitely want to do more for the city and the franchise," Jennings responded. "I want to make the playoffs and get out of the first round and become an All-Star for the Bucks. We haven't had one since Michael Redd so I want to be the first."

That has to be encouraging for Bucks general manager John Hammond, but of course it comes down to money. Milwaukee has already offered Jennings, a restricted free agent, a $4.3 million qualifying offer.

If signed, that would keep Jennings in Milwaukee for at least one more year, but he would become an unrestricted free agent next summer. To keep Jennings long term, it will likely take an offer in the $10-12 million range annually.

Jennings, a Los Angeles native, has spoken in the past about potentially moving on to a big-market franchise. But he says he would not mind being a big fish in Milwaukee's small pond.

"It depends on if they want me to be 'The Man' of the team and if we can get a deal done," he said. "Hopefully, they want me to be 'The Man.' "

Jennings likes the Bucks' new direction and applauded the hiring of former Hawks coach Larry Drew.

"I believe he can help me become an All-Star and a better player," said Jennings, who averaged 17.5 points and a career-high 6.5 assists last season.

If Jennings signs the one-year qualifying offer, he could be in position to play for his hometown team, the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers are positioned to have plenty of cap space next summer.

If Jennings rejects the qualifying offer and tests the market this summer, the Bucks have said they intend to match any offer he receives from another club.