The Greek Freak scratched that rich itch.
In an era that sees superstars such as LeBron James and Kevin Durant bounced around the league, two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo elected to stay with the Milwaukee Bucks for a five-year, $228 million supermax contract extension, according to ESPN. He went the Kobe Bryant/Stephen Curry route of remaining with his original franchise.
The man with a name that is a mouthful now has his pockets full, signing a deal to stay with a small-market franchise and continue building a contender rather than chasing a larger market and a ready-made title team, like what Anthony Davis did in seeking a trade from New Orleans to the Los Angeles Lakers last year. Rather than being a free agent next summer, Antetokounmpo will have an opt-out after the fourth year.
“This is my home, this is my city,” Antetokounmpo posted on Twitter and Instagram on Tuesday. “I’m blessed to be able to be a part of the Milwaukee Bucks for the next 5 years. Let’s make these years count. The show goes on, let’s get it.”
Antetokounmpo, who just turned 26 this month, became the only player besides Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon to win MVP and Defensive Player of the Year in the same season – this year, when he averaged career highs in points (29.5) and rebounds (13.6) to go with 5.6 assists per game.
“This is a big moment for me and my family, and I want to thank the Bucks organization for believing in us,” Antetokounmpo said in a statement Tuesday. “You took a chance on us eight years ago, and now putting my signature on a contract like this is unreal.”
With that aside, Antetokounmpo has a more daunting task than sports writers trying to spell his name correctly – leading the Bucks further than last season’s second-round playoff exit and to their first NBA title since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar led them in 1971.