According to the NBA’s recent rankings of NBA MVP Candidates, Giannis Antetokounmpo has jumped from #3 to #2 behind Nikola Jokic. Giannis and Jayson Tatum (#3) leapfrogged Joel Embiid who fell from #3 to #4. Luka Doncic didn’t move this week, remaining at #5. Here is what they had to say regarding the Greek Freak’s recent play amid the Milwaukee Bucks’ 10-win streak.
“This move was overdue considering Giannis Antetokounmpo averaged a staggering 37.5 points, 14.5 rebounds and 5.4 assists while connecting on 60.8% from the floor entering Thursday’s 115-106 win against the Los Angeles Lakers . . . Milwaukee came into the season as the most experienced team in the NBA by average age and seasons played. But these Bucks certainly haven’t showed any signs of slowing down their current [ten]-game win streak led by the two-time MVP . . .”
Giannis Is Rising
Giannis has steadily climbed the ladder after dropping down to #5 for most of January in these rankings. He is currently averaging 32.3 PPG, 12.4 RPG, and 5.4 APG. That’s good for 3rd in points per game (behind Embiid at 33.4 and Doncic at 33.3) and 1st in rebounds per game. The Greek Freak also ranks 4th in Defensive Rating; no other player in the KIA NBA MVP Ladder is even in the top ten.* If he keeps playing the way he has since Khris Middleton returned to the team, Giannis may end up earning his third NBA MVP trophy and possibly his second Defensive Player of the Year award.
*Fun Fact: The Bucks have three players who rank in the top 6 in Defensive Rating according to the NBA: Giannis, Brook Lopez, and Jevon Carter.