Giannis Antetokounmpo is beneath contract with the Milwaukee Bucks for no less than two extra seasons, however will quickly be eligible to signal a three-year, $173 million extension that might tie him to Milwaukee for no less than the subsequent 5 years.
It apparently will not be that easy.
The 2-time NBA MVP mentioned his contract standing with Tania Ganguli of The New York Instances, outright stating he would not plan to signal an extension when eligible in a couple of weeks and indicating there are nonetheless some issues he needs to see earlier than agreeing to a deal subsequent summer season:
“The actual query’s not going to be this 12 months — numbers-wise it doesn’t make sense,” Antetokounmpo mentioned. “However subsequent 12 months, subsequent summer season it might make extra sense for each events. Even then, I don’t know.”
He added: “I’d not be the most effective model of myself if I don’t know that everyone’s on the identical web page, everyone’s going for a championship, everyone’s going to sacrifice time away from their household like I do. And if I don’t really feel that, I’m not signing.”
Antetokounmpo, who’s recovering from minor knee surgical procedure, signed a five-year, $228.2 million supermax contract in 2020 that set him as much as play out his prime in his adopted metropolis. To this point, he has delivered on that cash, profitable his first championship in 2021 whereas sustaining the manufacturing and protection that received him back-to-back MVPs in 2019 and 2020, however the Bucks have had their stumbles.
The 2021-22 Bucks defended their title by going 51-31 and dropping the Japanese Convention semifinals to the Boston Celtics regardless of a historic efficiency from Antetokounmpo. They had been even higher within the subsequent common season, going 58-34, after which fell much more flat with a first-round exit in opposition to the Miami Warmth.
Milwaukee responded by firing head coach Mike Budenholzer two years after profitable a title and changing him with Toronto Raptors assistant Adrian Griffin. Antetokounmpo was reportedly concerned within the hiring course of, assembly with Griffin in the course of the interview course of and endorsing him, however he nonetheless informed the Instances that the teaching change is a part of why he is not sure if he’ll signal an extension:
“You’ve obtained to see the dynamics,” he mentioned. “How the coach goes to be, how we’re going to be collectively. On the finish of the day, I really feel like all my teammates know and the group is aware of that I need to win a championship. So long as we’re on the identical web page with that and also you present me and we go collectively to win a championship, I’m all for it. The second I really feel like, oh, yeah, we’re making an attempt to rebuild —”
The previous few years within the NBA may make one cynical when a celebrity alerts some unhappiness or apprehension about committing to a crew, however Antetkounmpo emphasised his love for the Bucks … whereas emphasizing profitable is his precedence:
“There’ll by no means be laborious emotions with the Milwaukee Bucks,” he mentioned. “I imagine that we’ve had 10 unbelievable years, and there’s little doubt I gave all the things for town of Milwaukee. Every thing. Each single evening, even once I’m harm. I’m a Milwaukee Buck. I bleed inexperienced. I do know this.
“That is my crew, and it’s going to eternally be my crew. I don’t neglect people who had been there for me and allowed me to be nice and to showcase who I’m to the world and gave me the platform. However we have now to win one other one.”
“However on the finish of the day, being a winner, it’s over that purpose,” he mentioned. “Successful a championship comes first. I don’t need to be 20 years on the identical crew and don’t win one other championship.”
Clearly, that is going to be a vital season for the Bucks if they need their subsequent half-decade to resemble their final half-decade.