‘Easier for Us to Win’: Bucks Co-owner Explains the Importance of Giannis Antetokounmpo’s Decision to Stay

Published 07/16/2021, 3:12 AM EDT
Jul 14, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) reacts during the fourth quarter against the Phoenix Suns during game four of the 2021 NBA Finals at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


The Milwaukee Bucks even the series as they win 109-103 over Phoenix. Milwaukee outplayed the Suns in the final quarter of the game. A clutch block by Giannis Antetokounmpo followed by a tough shot by Khris Middleton put the Bucks in command. Now, the Bucks will hope to continue their momentum as they head to Phoenix for Game 5.

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Marc Lasry, the co-owner of the Bucks, was on The Jump and he spoke about his side evening up the series. Furthermore, he also spoke about Giannis deciding to stay in Milwaukee in the offseason and how he was nervous throughout.

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Giannis Antetokounmpo commits to Milwaukee

In the off-season last year, Giannis Antetokounmpo signed the biggest contract in NBA history worth $228 million. He signed the extension, keeping him in Milwaukee for another 5 years. When asked about Giannis’ commitment, Lasry said:

“It was huge for our organization, it really was. I think for us as well it was really big. One of the things you gotta understand is that what we’ve done here is we have ended up building this whole organization and a team so that everything was really positive. So, Giannis signing, I mean for us it was the whole culmination of what we have been trying to do. And, it actually worked out as well as we thought we could, and that commitment from him to the city, to the town, to the state, to the organization I think it paid off. I mean, one of the things we talked about was the fact that if he did that, it will be easier for us to win a championship. And, I think that’s where we are so it’s worked out as well for everybody.”

He further mentioned how he was nervous throughout the whole process because Giannis Antetokounmpo took a while to sign the extension. Moreover, he went on to speak about the importance of Khris Middleton for the Bucks organization.

Jul 14, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) defends Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) during the fourth quarter during game four of the 2021 NBA Finals at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Giannis’ journey with the Bucks

Milwaukee signed a young Giannis in 2013. Now, we know him as the ‘Greek Freak’ who dominates the game of basketball. However, Giannis had a slow start to his career. In his rookie season, Giannis averaged just over 6 points per game.

He kept improving every season and gradually climbed his way up the ladder. He found his breakout season in 2017, as he won the Most Improved Player award putting up 22 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists. After that, 2 years later, he won his first MVP trophy in 2019, joining Kareem Abdul Jabbar as the only other Bucks player to win MVP.

Jul 11, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) reacts during game three of the 2021 NBA Finals against the Phoenix Suns at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

He won consecutive MVPs as he won the trophy again next season, making him just the 12th player to win consecutive regular-season MVP awards. Now, he sits just 2 games away from being crowned as an NBA champion for the first time in his career. In addition, he is putting up ridiculous numbers with 29 points, 13 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, and a block.

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Do you think Giannis Antetokounmpo can lead the Bucks to their first championship since 1971?

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Anuj Talwalkar

134 articles

Anuj Talwalkar is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He is a student studying at NM College in Mumbai, aspiring to pursue sports management to follow his love for sports. Anuj started following the NBA last year, and he loves to combine his passion for writing with his understanding of basketball.

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