By: ENZO MORALES
The reigning back to back NBA MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo signed a 5-year contract worth $228 million with the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks star who averaged 29.5 PPG, 13,6 Rebounds, and 5.6 AST last season resigned with the team that drafted him and is certainly looking to win championships in Milwaukee then any other city. This certainly surprised a lot of fans, including myself since so many thought he would be the next Kevin Durant by joining Stephen Curry and the Warriors or Jimmy Butler and the Heat. When asked about his decision, he expressed in a Twitter tweet that “This is my home, this is my city. I’m blessed to be able to be a part of the Milwaukee Bucks for the next 5 years. Let’s make these years count. The show goes on, let’s get it. (Link)”
Even though we all wanted him to switch teams, his decision to stay was very respectable. He clearly loves this organization and expressed his love in a statement “This is a big moment for me and my family, and I want to thank the Bucks organization for believing in us. You took a chance on us eight years ago, and now putting my signature on a contract like this is unreal — but it’s all because of hard work. (Link)” Unlike LeBron, Kevin Durant, and Paul George he clearly wants to be a part of an organization that has been with him ever since the start. He doesn’t want to take the “easy route” to win by joining other All-Stars and instead wants to win on his own.
This just proves how hard he is on himself as he wants to win on a team that hasn’t had any success since its Championship in 1971. Other examples of this was when he won the MVP award and was visibly seen criticizing how the award means nothing without a championship. Antetokounmpo was also heard numerous times pointing the finger to himself rather than his teammates after a loss. He usually takes responsibility for a loss even though he played the best game he could possibly play.
His decision to stay with the Bucks also reminds me of Dirk Nowtizki back in 2011. Dirk played with the Mavericks his entire career winning one of the hardest NBA Championships of all time against the Miami Heat which featured players such as LeBron, Wade, and Bosh. He had many opportunities to switch teams that had better players but decided to stay with Dallas.
Giannis Antetokounmpo’s decision tells us he would rather take his chances for the next five years with a team that had faith in him ever since he was drafted rather than a team that only wants him to win Championships and doesn’t really value his presence outside the court. Him staying with the Bucks just proves that being loyal to a team is a very important aspect in the sports world. One question still remains though, Will he be able to lead the Bucks to a Championship? Or will Playoff frustrations continue to build up and which eventually leads him to leave?