Giannis Antetokounmpo is a focused basketball player these days!
We learned that over the weekend when the Greek Freak was putting up shots while Ja Rule was performing his halftime show.
If you’re tardy to the party, see below:
While scoring 38 points in the NBA All Star Game may have been a national coming out party for some, The Greek Freak has been consistent all season.
Before the 2018-19 NBA season I told NBA analyst and Get More Sports Podcast host, Chris Sheridan that Antetokounmpo was my pre-season MVP selection.
Seemed like a no-brainer then and a great decision now.
Antetokounmpo is guiding the first place Bucks to a 45-14 record while averaging 27.2 points, 12.7 rebounds and 6 assists this season; all career numbers.
“Giannis has got the hands of Doctor J, the athleticism of Doctor J and he’s about five inches taller at 6’11” than Doctor J was,” Fox Sports Milwaukee analyst Marques Johnson told me on the Scoop B Radio Podcast.
“I think Giannis Antetokounmpo would be, in my mind, the Doctor J for the new millennium.”
The Greek Freak is believed to be among the top MVP candidates this season along with the Houston Rockets’ James Harden.
The Oklahoma City Thunder’s Paul George is also getting strong consideration, of late.
Million dollar question: How can the Greek Freak win the whole shebang?
“[If] Giannis continues to lead this team to 55 to 60 wins, which we’re on pace to do, and right now, there’s no way in the world that he can’t be considered as the MVP,” said Johnson.
That’s a pretty fair assessment.
Under head coach, Mike Budenholzer and teammates Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez and company, the Greek Freak has been explosive, patient and just grinding.
“Giannis, you look at his numbers right now, you look at what Harden’s doing, so then it’s going to go down between those two,” said Johnson.
“Kawhi Leonard started off hot, but Harden has usurped all the coverage based on the numbers he’s putting up.”
Johnson broke it down further:
“I think with Giannis, if he continues to lead this team to victory the way he’s done, we did a game the other night against Memphis, second-half Memphis’s energy was a lot more active than our energy. Giannis came out in that third quarter of that game and just dominated for the first three to five minutes, set the tone, the team followed suit, we wound up blowing out the Grizzlies in what has been a tough game and a close game, we wound up beating them by 25, 30 points where otherwise we might’ve won by 10 or so, but my point is it was because of Giannis.”
The Greek Freak feels as though he should be the league’s MVP.
“I should be MVP because – I don’t care, I just care about winning.” he told ESPN’s Rachel Nichols.
“You just keep winning and playing good basketball and everything will take care of itself.”
Marques Johnson likes The Greek Freak’s progression and this year is special! “There’s no way in the world that he can’t be considered as the MVP if he’s averaging 27, 28 like he’s doing now, 13 rebounds and the team is winning, he tells Scoop B Radio.
“It’s just gotta be tough in my mind, and you know as well as anybody, the amount of times that the MVP is not based on what you do that year, but kind of your body of work the prior two years, Giannis got on people’s basketball map a couple of years ago. Last year played great, the all-pro. Now this year people are really watching, so the small market thing and today’s NBA with all the outlet, the view of the game and League Pass and TNT and NBA TV and ESPN, it’s nowhere near as much as a detriment as it was a few years back for Giannis and his name recognition also it’s going to help him too.”
The tale of the Giannis’ tape supports that argument. The Greek Freak discussed it in is interview with Nichols.
Per Fadeaway World: Since his rookie season, the Greek Freak has transformed into a superstar. Looking back at his rookie self, he says, “He was a kid that worked hard, believed in himself. He didn’t have much. He didn’t have a lot of muscle. He didn’t have a lot of skill, but he gave his heart and soul.”