June 6, 2016, 7:24 am
Though he was named to Greece’s preliminary roster for the nation’s Olympic qualifying tournament, Sportando is reporting that Giannis Antetokounmpo may not play for his national team.
Antetokounmpo has been vocal in the past about his desires to represent Greece on the national stage, but the Bucks would like him to remain in the US to learn the intricacies of the point guard position. While the report also states that no discussions have been held with the Bucks, GA will likely acquiesce and set his sights on bringing Milwaukee back to the playoffs.
It’s an understandable request from the team, as the Greek Freak is undoubtedly the foundation of Milwaukee’s future. He performed well as a facilitator last season, but extra time spent developing under the tutelage of the coaching staff never hurts. As the franchise cornerstone, it is imperative that the Bucks do everything they can to help Antetokounmpo succeed.
Antetokounmpo will start the season as Milwaukee’s starting point guard, and watching his game blossom last season was a bright spot in a disappointing year for the Bucks. His length and athleticism make him a plausible fit at just about any position, especially as the NBA moves towards smaller lineup configurations.
Antetokounmpo’s absence would be a huge blow to Greece’s Olympic hopes, as he is by far the best player on the roster. If, and presumably when, the decision is made official, the task will fall to NBA names like Kostas Papanikolaou, Nick Calathes and Kosta Koufos as well as Giannis’s younger brother Thanasis. Having the elder Antetokounmpo present at any position would obviously be ideal, but Greece should be preparing to forge on without its best player.
April 23, 2019, 12:21 amBlake Griffin - F - Detroit Pistons
Blake Griffin may have limped through 28 minutes in Monday night's 127-104 Game 4 loss to the Bucks, but he put up 22 points, five rebounds, six assists and four threes.
Griffin helped keep the Pistons' season alive for almost three quarters on a bad knee before fouling out in the fourth to a standing ovation. He was at significantly less than 100 percent during this series, but it was good to see him lay it all out there as a last-gasp effort for his team. Griffin had a great fantasy season and there should be more of the same as the 30-year-old hopefully returns healthy in 2019-20.
April 23, 2019, 12:10 amReggie Jackson - G - Detroit Pistons
Reggie Jackson scored a team-high 26 points (9-of-20 FGs, 5-of-9 threes, 3-of-3 FTs) with seven dimes, three boards and a steal in Monday's Game 4 loss to the Bucks.
Jackson looked great tonight while keeping the Pistons in front for the majority of the game. However, the Bucks went on a big run in the third and fourth quarters to complete the sweep. Jackson, at age 29, doesn't have a whole lot of upside left, but he's certainly capable of putting together games like this once or twice a month to swing a head-to-head matchup.
April 22, 2019, 11:53 pmAndre Drummond - C - Detroit Pistons
Andre Drummond double-doubled with 15 points and 12 rebounds in addition to three assists and one steal in Monday's series finale vs. the Bucks.
Drummond made just 7-of-16 field goals as he was blocked at the rim multiple times and struggled to drop it in even when he wasn't. Brook Lopez and Giannis Antetokounmpo didn't make it easy on him tonight, but Drummond did have a strong season that shouldn't be forgotten as next season's fantasy drafts roll around.
April 22, 2019, 11:45 pmLuke Kennard - G - Detroit Pistons
Luke Kennard came off the bench on Monday night and scored just 11 points with one triple in 32 minutes.
Kennard had a pair of four-trey games to start the series, but he was mostly invisible in this one. There's still reason for optimism when Kennard enters his third season with the Pistons, especially if he can secure a consistant starting role.
April 22, 2019, 11:32 pmLangston Galloway - G - Detroit Pistons
Langston Galloway was very active as he compiled 10 points, two rebounds, three assists, two steals and two threes in 32 minutes off the bench on Monday, but it wasn't enough to keep the Pistons alive.
Galloway's spark helped the Pistons hold the lead for majority of the game, but the Bucks eventually outplayed them to complete the series sweep. He'll be back with the Pistons and likely won't be much more than an occasional threes streamer in standard leagues once again.
April 22, 2019, 11:23 pmGiannis Antetokounmpo - F - Milwaukee Bucks
Giannis Antetokounmpo went for a playoff career-high 41 (12-for-23 FGs, 15-for-20 FTs) points vs. the Pistons in Monday's 127-104 Game 4 victory.
Giannis was everywhere tonight as the Bucks completed the Round 1 sweep. He blocked four shots, had nine boards, dished out three assists, had a steal and hit two triples in his 32 minutes to go with the big scoring total. The Pistons had the lead for the majority of the game, but Antetokounmpo and company's superior talent, shooting and aggressiveness won out down the stretch.
April 22, 2019, 11:14 pmKhris Middleton - F - Milwaukee Bucks
Khris Middleton had 18 points (5-of-11 FGs, 6-of-7 FTs), four rebounds, one assist and two 3-pointers in 30 minutes as the Bucks completed their sweep of the Pistons on Monday night.
Middleton had a good series, averaging 19.0 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 2.8 threes. The Bucks will likely need him to keep it up as the competition heats up in Round 2 vs. the Celtics.
April 22, 2019, 11:08 pmSterling Brown - G - Milwaukee Bucks
Sterling Brown grabbed a game-high 13 boards to go with nine points, six assists and a steal in 27 minutes in Monday's win over the Pistons.
Brown didn't put up the flashiest stat lines in this series, but this was a great one. Malcolm Brogdon (right foot plantar fascia) is likely to return at some point in the next series against the Celtics, so Brown is probably headed back to the bench shortly.
April 22, 2019, 11:02 pmEric Bledsoe - G - Milwaukee Bucks
Eric Bledsoe had a well-rounded line with 16 points, three rebounds, five assists, two steals, one block and one three in 28 minutes in Monday's Game 4 win over the Pistons.
Bledsoe shot 7-of-12 in this closeout game while providing a steady veteran presence. For the series, he averaged over 19 points, four rebounds, five assists and exactly two steals. Bledsoe's defense will be tested in Round 2 against Kyrie Irving and the Celtics.
April 22, 2019, 10:54 pmNikola Mirotic - F - Milwaukee Bucks
Nikola Mirotic sank three triples on his way to scoring 12 points for the second game in a row in Monday's Game 4 against the Pistons.
Mirotic is still rounding into form and he's not doing much beyond hitting threes, but he should be able to contribute more in the next series as he gets his wind back.