Giannis Antetokounmpo Breaks Silence After Milwaukee Bucks Playoff Exit

Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks, NBA News
Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo revealed he was nowhere near ready to return from a left calf strain during the NBA playoffs, expressing frustration over watching his team exit early.

“I tried my “I tried my best to come back to help my teammates,” Antetokounmpo said. “It’s kind of hard to see them being out there and not being able to help them, but I just couldn’t. to come back to help my teammates.

“I did all the tests I had to do, these like protocols you have to follow and have to check the boxes,” Antetokounmpo explained. “I wasn’t even close at checking the boxes.”

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Despite adhering to strict recovery protocols, Antetokounmpo could only manage a limited level of his normal running capacity. This injury marks the second consecutive postseason he has missed games due to health issues, prompting him to contemplate changes to his approach for next season.

“I don’t know. Maybe I do follow a different pattern,” Antetokounmpo said. “Maybe try different things. I don’t like the word ‘rest.’ Like, if I can play, I will play. If I cannot play, I can’t play. I’m for sure going to sit down and think about it, of how my summer is going to look like and how next year is going to look like.”

Antetokounmpo’s involvement in the upcoming Paris Olympics remains uncertain as Greece must still qualify through a tournament in July. He expects to fully recover for two to three weeks before making any decisions about his offseason schedule.

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Reflecting on his performance over the past season, Antetokounmpo played 73 games, averaging 30.4 points on 61.1% shooting from the floor. He remains confident in what Milwaukee can achieve when each of its main talents all play.

“Obviously, it doesn’t feel good. The wound, you know, it’s fresh. It’s open. You just lost in the first round,” Antetokounmpo said. “But I’m not a guy who makes excuses. Right now, I do believe that when me, Khris and Dame and Brook was on the floor and we’re healthy, we were one of the best offenses in the NBA. And you can go and check that.”

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks Updates

Despite the on-paper potential, the Bucks were ousted early for the second straight year, which Antetokounmpo attributes partly to limited playtime among key players under new coach Doc Rivers.

 “It was a hard season. From many aspects, if you look at the changes: The coaches. The players changes. New assistants. New people, new staff,” Antetokounmpo said. “How you play … it was something draining. But this is why we do what we do; we don’t expect it to be perfect. Just got to keep moving forward and try to do your job and hope you can do it to the best of your ability.”

Antetokounmpo remains optimistic about the offseason and plans to enhance team chemistry, particularly with teammate Damian Lillard, with a visit to Portland in the works.

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