What Giannis Antetokounmpo Told Jayson Tatum After Losing Game 7

Tatum Antetokounmpo

Getty Images Jayson Tatum of the Celtics hugs Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Bucks after the Celtics defeated the Bucks 109-81 in Game 7 of the 2022 NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference Semifinals at TD Garden

After beating the Milwaukee Bucks 109-81 in Game 7 of their best-of-7 series, the Boston Celtics are heading to Miami for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

On the strength of Celtics forwards Grant Williams, who netted a career-high 27 points, including a whopping seven 3-pointers, and Jayson Tatum (23 points, 8 assists), Boston outscored the Bucks 61-38 in the second half before cruising to a blowout win.

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Giannis Antetokounmpo Hopes Jayson Tatum, Celtics Reach ‘Championship’ Finish

After the game, Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo gave his take on what went wrong for Milwaukee in the series.

“Obviously, we didn’t make enough threes,” Antetokounmpo said. “We shoot a lot of threes. On the other hand, I couldn’t be more proud of the guys and the effort they gave. We had a chance to win, but we gave everything we had. We left everything out there. So, I cannot be more proud of the guys, the effort, and everything they gave for the games.”

Per, Celtics.com’s Taylor Snow, the Celtics finished a plus-53 in 3-pointers made against the Bucks throughout the best-of-7 series — which is a difference of 159 points. In Game 7, Milwaukee shot at a 12.1% clip (4-for-33) while Boston made 22-of-55 (40%) from behind the arc.

Moments after the final buzzer, Giannis embraced Tatum, and the two shared a brief conversation before going their separate ways. Antetokounmpo shared the contents of that chat during his media availability.

“It kind of hurts not to win. But, at the end of the day — the way my mom and dad raised me — I’m a good human being, and I got to wish Tatum and his team the best for them moving forward,” Antetokounmpo said after Game 7. “I think they played great, was able to win the series, I wish them the best of luck, for him to continue playing great, and lead his team to, hopefully, a championship.”

Giannis believes the Celtics have what it takes to reach the NBA Finals and beyond.

“They’re a great team, have great chemistry, and have a chance to win one,” he added. “I told him that, gave him my respect. He gave me his respect back. So, that was it.”

Antetokounmpo On Losing Game 7 Vs. Celtics: ‘Made Me a Better Player’

All in all, Antetokounmpo is taking this loss in stride, as he believes the sting that can only come after losing a Game 7 matchup, in the end, should ultimately make the Bucks a better team.

“I enjoyed it. It definitely made me a better player,” Antetokounmpo said. “You get better through experience how I enjoy being out there with my teammates. I enjoy having this great season, a long (expletive) season — I’m sorry for my language — long season, through the ups and downs. I’m going to miss the itch for a while now, but I enjoyed this series, and I wasn’t able to win. I wish we were the team that plays in Miami on Tuesday, but we’re not. Have a great offseason, and get better.

“Feel this; what we feel right now, hopefully, can motivate us throughout the season and come back healthy and ready to go.”


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