Giannis Antetokounmpo redoubled his dedication to the one N.B.A. franchise he has identified by indicating he’ll settle for a five-year contract extension price an estimated $228 million from the Milwaukee Bucks.
Six days earlier than a Dec. 21 deadline to both signal the so-called supermax extension or turn into an unrestricted free agent after this season, Antetokounmpo on Tuesday launched a press release through his social media channels proclaiming himself “blessed to have the ability to be part of the Milwaukee Bucks for the following 5 years.”
“That is my dwelling, that is my metropolis,” Antetokounmpo wrote.
The Bucks chosen Antetokounmpo, who was born and raised in Greece by Nigerian mother and father, with the 15th total decide within the 2013 draft, regardless of Antetokounmpo’s restricted skilled expertise within the Greek second division. Antetokounmpo has blossomed past all expectations to win back-to-back Most Priceless Participant Awards and, by committing his long-term future to the Bucks, has delivered the staff its most important victory since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Oscar Robertson led Milwaukee to its lone N.B.A. championship in 1970-1971.
“This is likely one of the nice days in Bucks historical past,” Peter Feigin, the Bucks’ staff president, mentioned throughout a digital assembly organized by the Milwaukee Press Membership after Antetokounmpo revealed the information.
Antetokounmpo, who turned 26 on Dec. 6, is underneath contract for yet another season on his present deal and, after he indicators the extension, can’t be traded by the Bucks earlier than subsequent season. The extension would be the largest contract in N.B.A. historical past, surpassing the five-year, $207 million contract Russell Westbrook signed to stick with the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder in September 2017. Antetokounmpo’s new deal will embrace a participant choice after the 2024-25 season that may enable him to enter free company one yr early.
After profitable M.V.P. honors for the primary time in 2018-19, Antetokounmpo averaged 29.5 factors, 13.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists per recreation final season to repeat as M.V.P. He was additionally named Defensive Participant of the 12 months final season, becoming a member of Michael Jordan (1987-88) and Hakeem Olajuwon (1993-94) as the one gamers to win the M.V.P. and defensive participant awards in the identical season.
The Bucks posted the league’s greatest regular-season document in every of the previous two seasons however have had back-to-back playoff disappointments, which led to appreciable apprehension in Milwaukee that Antetokounmpo would possibly go on the extension and select a brand new staff subsequent season. After a meek second-round playoff collection loss to the Miami Warmth this summer season, Bucks officers promised Antetokounmpo that they might improve the roster — and so they duly agreed to a commerce in November to accumulate the extremely rated guard Jrue Vacation from the New Orleans Pelicans.
However a deliberate sign-and-trade take care of the Sacramento Kings to accumulate the sharpshooting restricted free agent Bogdan Bogdanovic along with Vacation collapsed and, as The New York Occasions first reported, prompted the league workplace to open an investigation. The N.B.A. is exploring potential violations of its anti-tampering guidelines, because it appeared that the Bucks and Kings had already reached an settlement on a sign-and-trade transaction greater than three days earlier than free-agent discussions of any variety have been allowed to begin. Bogdanovic finally joined the Atlanta Hawks after he signed a four-year, $72 million provide sheet with the Hawks that Sacramento elected to not match.
Tuesday’s announcement ended a nervy interval for the Bucks for the reason that Vacation acquisition and the Bogdanovic drama, sparing the small-market franchise from the specter of fixed questions on Antetokounmpo’s future because the Bucks attempt to make it again to the N.B.A. finals for the primary time since 1973-74. After that season, Abdul-Jabbar quietly requested Milwaukee to commerce him, saying he most well-liked to reside in New York or Los Angeles. The request finally led the Bucks to commerce Abdul-Jabbar to the Los Angeles Lakers in June 1975.
In a 2017 interview with The Occasions, Antetokounmpo described himself as “a low-profile guy” who had little interest in “all these flashy cities like L.A. or Miami.”
“I don’t know if I might be the identical participant if I performed in these cities,” Antetokounmpo mentioned then.
Groups corresponding to Miami, Toronto and Dallas had been managing their payrolls in hopes of creating a free-agent run at Antetokounmpo in 2021, however to the Bucks’ nice reduction, groups in flashier markets received’t get that probability.