Things didn’t quite go as planned for the Milwaukee Bucks this postseason. After securing the No. 1 seed in the league during the regular season and seeding games, the Bucks were the heavy favorites to come out of the East and compete for an NBA championship this fall.
But the Bucks suffered a stunning defeat at the hands of a Heat team that is looking more and more like a championship caliber squad with each decisive win. Naturally, that outcome raised all sorts of questions about the future of the franchise and their star, Giannis Antetokounmpo, who can become a free agent next summer and will receive a supermax offer from the Bucks sometime in the coming weeks/months.
Giannis, for his part, however, put any fears to rest about whether he might start orchestrating his exit from Milwaukee, telling reporters not long after their ouster that he had no plans to demand trade. Instead, he met with team owner Marc Lasry to discuss how to move forward and improve their roster.
Giannis took those comments a step further on Friday, saying that he’s committed to remaining with the Bucks long term, as long as everyone is on the same page about how best to compete for titles moving forward.
“As long as everybody’s fighting for the same thing … which is to be a champion, I don’t see why not to be in Milwaukee for the next 15 years.”
— ESPN (@espn) September 18, 2020
Of course, we’ve seen superstars make these sorts of comments in the past, only for it to come back to haunt them later. However, there’s no reason to doubt Giannis’ sincerity in the moment.
Giannis won his second straight MVP award on Friday, putting him in elite company as one of a handful of players to win both MVP and Defensive Player of the Year. A busy offseason lies ahead for both him and the organization, and it’s clear the Bucks will be one of the more active teams on the market when the time comes.