Former standout college star and current player Emoni Bates came to the defense of Milwaukee Bucks F Thanasis Antetokounmpo on Friday.
Emoni Bates’ IG post about people trashing Thanasis pic.twitter.com/v1sEuOwfpQ
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) November 3, 2023
First off, the question itself is clickbait. There is no such thing as being the worst player in the NBA. Millions of basketball players dream of playing in the NBA, yet only 450 of those jobs exist. The problem is that compared to his brother, Stephen Curry, and Lebron James, Thanasis is low on the NBA totem pole, but compared to regular people, he’s a top-five player in the world.
Why Thanasis Antetokounmpo plays a vital role for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Thanasis isn’t just there because he’s Giannis’ brother. He’s in Milwaukee because he’s a talented basketball player. So much so that Thanasis briefly thought about leaving Giannis and the Milwaukee Bucks to join the New York Knicks. While he might not factor into Head Coach Adrian Griffin’s rotation this season, what player brings more energy and is more accepting of his role than Thanasis?
Nobody, that’s why the criticism of Thanasis being on the roster is odd to me. He’s not taking up a roster spot from someone more deserving. He’s the last guy on the bench. How many players in the NBA would sign up for a role of playing 35-40 games or maybe less than that, and having your role, bringing positive energy to the team?
I know names like Isaiah Thomas are out there (including from Thomas himself.) But would he accept his role as the last guy on the bench? Probably not. Thomas would provide marginal value for the Bucks, and it wouldn’t be worth it to go after a player whose best days are behind him.
For the Milwaukee Bucks, Antetokounmpo provides defense and effort. That’s enough to stick onto an NBA team long-term. Not only that, but how many last guys on the bench have had as many posterizing dunks as him? Not too many, so please, NBA fans. I implore you to stop this ridiculous notion that there is such a thing as the “worst player in the NBA.” That moniker doesn’t exist.