‘Never Pressure From Giannis’s Side’: Giannis Antetokounmpo’s Agent Opens up on the $228 Million Max-Deal

Published 03/05/2021, 2:30 PM EST


Heading into the off-season last year, the spotlight was on Giannis Antetokounmpo. After being ousted in the Playoffs early with the Bucks, he had a decision to make – sign the richest contract in the history of the NBA or leave Milwaukee and look for greener pastures in the 2021 free agency.

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Even though all the attention was on Giannis, he wasn’t the person under the most pressure. It was his agent, Alex Saratsis, who has been representing him ever since he came into the league. He must have been facing the heat from Giannis’ side, right?

Feb 10, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) dunks against Phoenix Suns forward Jae Crowder (99) and center Deandre Ayton (22) during the second half at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

[There was] never pressure from Giannis’s side, and as everybody was giving me [crap] about, we took our time. There’s so much more to his thought process and who he is as an individual, that it’s not just, ‘Here’s $228 million,'” Alex contradicted.

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The key to the Greek Freak’s mega-deal wasn’t all money; it was about peace of mind. At the end of the day, Alex wanted Giannis to be happy and content with the choice he made.

“There was nothing we were going to go to the Bucks with and they were going to say no,” says Alex Saratsis.

Feb 23, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) defends Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jaylen Nowell (4) during the second quarter at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

“It’s not just a business decision, it’s an emotional decision. Yeah, things can change and we can ask for a trade if you want to, but for all intents and purposes this is the next few years of your career, in the prime of your career, and I want you to be happy.”

Alex Saratsis & Giannis Antetokounmpo share a family-like relationship

It is not a coincidence that these two are engaged in a working relationship. They both come from Greek heritage; hence, language was never a barrier for the two. Alex has been with him every step of the way, and Giannis knows the full value of that.

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“I don’t think people understand the kind of relationship me and my family has with Alex. He is as close to family to me as anyone that is not blood related can be,” remarked Giannis.

Well, now he can rest a little easy after sealing the richest contract extension in the history of this sport. But for the man who represents others like Bam Adebayo, it will always be a chaotic offseason.

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Bharat Aggarwal

701 articles

Bharat Aggarwal is a sports analyst for EssentiallySports, covering Formula 1 and NBA. A Delhi University graduate, Bharat has multi-year experience in sports writing, having closely worked with the content strategy aspect as well. Bharat Aggarwal supports Manchester United, Lewis Hamilton, Cristiano Ronaldo, Rafael Nadal, Dirk Nowitzki, Sachin Tendulkar, Ayrton Senna, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dallas Mavericks.

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