40 years later-my goodness, 40 years have passed, and it will be 2061-people who love basketball will talk about Giannis Antetokounmpo’s performance, which is the most important to the sport. A tribute to the great players for their best efforts.
Those who have not seen rookie Magic Johnson transition from point guard to center in 1980, replaced the injured Karim Abdul-Jabbar, and played for the 76ers in Game 6 42 points and 15 rebounds-they will have this Giannis masterpiece. They will always watch TV at home, or in a bar, or on the lawn outside the Fiserv forum, or a lucky few, in the arena. Or they will be one of those people who claim to have been in the building, even if it is a lie.
They will remember that Giannis scored 50 points- 50! If they were really students of this sport, they would still remember that he became one of only seven people to score 50 points in the NBA Finals. Each of his predecessors are recognized legends in the sport: Bob Pettit, Elgin Baylor, Jerry West, Rick Barry, Michael Jordan and LeBron James.
Now, Giannis Antetokounmpo is on this list — and a good fit for this respected company.
He is on that list because he needs it. Giannis scored 50 not because it was gorgeous or cool, and certainly not because he was the kind of person who would be the focus or basketball. He scored 50 points because if he scored fewer points, the Bucks would plan to return to Phoenix instead of celebrating the team’s first NBA championship since 1971, with the sixth game on Tuesday night. 105-98 beat the Suns.
In a painful game with 45 seconds left, Antetokounmpo scored almost half of Milwaukee’s: 47.6% to be precise, which was the first time a player in the Finals scored his team. Four high percentages. He scored 13 of the Bucks’ 28 points in the final quarter and 20 of their 35 points in the third quarter. That was 33 points in the second half. With his vitality, skill, will, and unmistakable touch on the free throw line, he overwhelmed the pressure of the game and the Suns’ defensive efforts.
Antetokounmpo said at the post-match press conference: “I want to develop a time machine where I can go back to my rookie year to win the rookie of the year.” “After I win the rookie of the year, I will Win everything.”
After scoring 50 points, Antetokounmpo shot 16 of 25, 17 of 19 from the free throw line, grabbed 14 rebounds and blocked 5 times. This is a complete destruction of every defender that Phoenix has in front of him: Deandre Ayton, Jay Crowder, and the unfortunate defenders who occasionally replace him.
“He is just the ultimate competitor, the ultimate winner,” coach Mike Budenholzer told ESPN. “He defends every position. He understands what we need to do well on the defensive end-there are a lot of people who don’t put the ball on the line like he did on the other end of the court.”
This Milwaukee team has destroyed all the nonsense about how to build an NBA team and what is possible in the past two decades.
Market size? Milwaukee ranks 37th among the US metropolitan areas. This may be an obstacle to signing the best free agents from other teams, but the Bucks can retain their stars, which means having extraordinary talent and continuity.
tank? The Bucks have been using single-digit NBA draft picks since 2009. The seven players who performed well in key moments have an average draft position of 26, and only Giannis entered the team through this process.
Blow up? When a team succeeds in the regular season but fails to advance in the playoffs, we often hear this stupid saying: The team should give up everything and start again. The Bucks won more than 70% of their games in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons, but failed to reach the finals on both occasions.
This is really frustrating, but it is also the history of the NBA. The “Bad Boys” Pistons almost beat the Celtics before the final breakthrough. Michael Jordan’s Bulls nearly beat the Pistons before they finally won the championship.
The Bucks’ regular season is not exactly the same as their two predecessors, but they fell 2-0 against the Nets and Suns and 2-2 against the Eagles. Soared and won the last two finals of the conference.
Antetokounmpo was selected by the Bucks with the 15th overall pick in 2013, which is relatively unknown except for those who closely follow the European game. However, despite his surprising video of the game, this draft pick was widely ridiculed. Some people criticized the team for passing the ball to Shane Larkin in Miami. The stand report stated that Giannis was not a few months away from preparing for the NBA, but “a few years later.” In his second season, he started 71 games for a $0.500 Bucks team, averaging 12.7 points per game.
After three seasons at Texas A&M University, Chris Middleton was selected by the Pistons with the 39th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, but after spending a humble rookie year there, he Fortunately, he was traded to Milwaukee and found a home. Since then, he and Antetokounmpo have been teammates while growing into stars, and decided to stay in Milwaukee a few years ago.
“He pushes me to be great every day,” Middleton, who ranked second on the team with 17 points, told ESPN.
“I want to do this in this city,” Antetokounmpo said after winning the finals MVP trophy. “I want to do it with these people. So I’m very happy. I’m very happy that we can finish it.”
In this game, on this evening, he did it very correctly. But he may be a little generous with “us” things.