When Giannis Antetokounmpo made his feelings about his Milwaukee Bucks abundantly clear earlier this summer, the general belief was that the former back-to-back MVP was sending a message to the organization. Giannis said that he will only stay if he keeps on winning — something that Milwaukee has failed to do over the past two seasons, at least in terms of going all the way and bringing home the championship.
Milwaukee Bucks Star Giannis Antetokounmpo Had No Ulterior Motive
Giannis was faced with this exact prospect in a recent interview with The Athletic’s Sam Amick. The seven-time All-Star was asked if had a grand plan when he came out with his controversial comments about potentially leaving Milwaukee. Antetokounmpo was having none of it:
“No. Zero. None of those things,” Antetokounmpo said emphatically. “It was organic. I didn’t have a strategy. Nothing. (That message) is something that I always — every year — say. I can go back and find five articles of me saying this since I was 22 years old, you know?”
To be fair, even general manager Jon Horst recently revealed that Giannis’ comments did not have a significant impact on the team’s offseason moves. They took it into consideration, but by no means was it the driving force for their decision to trade for Damian Lillard.
Giannis Sheds More Light on Comments
Giannis then went on to discuss the much-talked-about interview itself, which was posted on the New York Times website. Antetokounmpo reiterated his comments shortly after in a podcast appearance, which only added more fuel to the fire.
According to the Greek Freak, however, he never said anything he hadn’t vocalized in the past.
“The New York Times piece was not about basketball. It was a business piece, and (the reporter), like everybody else, cut to the chase and asked me a basketball question and I said what I always say,” he continued. “And the podcast, I went on this podcast because the (host, former Bucks assistant coach Ross Geiger) is my friend. He’s a guy who, when I came into the league and I was 18 and nobody was talking to me, he took care of me. I slept on his couch. He helped me when I got groceries. He allowed me to drive his car because I didn’t have a driver’s license. I only had (a permit), where I took a test and I could drive with somebody in the car. So he was always that guy in the car. We’d go and get food. He. took me to the game, took me to the practice every day, so it was the least I could do.”
This is obviously all water under the bridge now that Giannis has signed a massive extension with the team. The stage has been set. It’s time for the Bucks to deliver.
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