3 reasons why Giannis Antetokounmpo is playing the best of his career
Milwaukee Bucks Superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo is arguably playing the best that he has in his career. It’s crazy to think that Giannis is playing better than ever considering he’s a two-time MVP winner, world champion, Finals MVP, and also has a Defensive Player of the Year. It’s obvious that Giannis is either the best or the second-best player in the world right now. The only other player who’s comparable to Giannis right now is Kevin Durant. There can be a comparison with Stephen Curry, but what Giannis brings on both ends of the court puts him over both Durant and Curry.
Let’s take a look at three reasons why Giannis is playing better than ever
Three reasons why Giannis is playing the best basketball of his career
3. He’s doing all of this with little to no help due to teammates injuries
Giannis has been able to play the way he has this season without most of his starters playing in more than five games. Milwaukee has played 11 games in the early season. Khris Middleton has missed five, Bobby Portis has missed five, Jrue Holiday has missed six, Brook Lopez has missed 10, and Donte DiVincenzo has missed 11. The most used lineup when Giannis is on the court features Grayson Allen, Pat Connaughton, Khris Middleton, and George Hill. This hasn’t mattered for Giannis as he has still been able to put up a ridiculous stat line.
Giannis has put up an incredible 27.3 points per game on an efficient 46.2% from the field. He also has the eighth-most rebounds in the NBA per game at 11.1. Giannis is averaging six assists per game. He also has the second-highest PER in the NBA.
Giannis Antetokounmpo has been without all four of his starters for most of the season and has still been able to put up these types of numbers. It’s going to be scary to see what he can do. Teams aren’t going to be able to throw double, and triple teams at him because the guys around him are too good.
2. Improved three-point shot and free throw
The 3-point shot and free throw are huge for him. Teams can no longer just foul him the second he goes to the basket because he’s hitting his free throws at a 70% rate. He’s also shooting 30% from behind the arc. It’s not necessarily just the numbers that are improving, but his jump shot looks a lot better and he’s proving that by putting up better numbers. The confidence is there and that’s something no one in the NBA wants to deal with. He’s already unstoppable but a jump shot would make him impossible to guard.
1. The championship weight is off his chest
The two-time MVP came up short in the past two playoffs prior to this past season. There wasn’t much Giannis can do as his teammates didn’t play the best. Two seasons ago when the Milwaukee Bucks lost to the Toronto Raptors, Brook Lopez was the second-leading scorer for the Bucks.
Milwaukee went out and traded for Jrue Holiday and that was the piece that Giannis Antetokounmpo needed to win a championship. It doesn’t seem like Giannis is one who worries about what others think of him but the pressure had to be settling in on him as he is 27 years old and didn’t have a ring yet. In Giannis’ defense, Michael Jordan and LeBron James didn’t have a ring by that age either. When you’re as good as Giannis is, your expected to win the championship every season. Now that the weight is off his shoulders, we’re finally seeing everything that he can do on the court.
Once he can get the rest of his team back and healthy it’s going to be interesting to see how much more he can do because he’s exerting all his energy right now playing the center position.