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Babies named after Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo spiked 135 percent in 2018

Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo

Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo has seen his popularity rise quite a bit since joining the NBA. His play on the court has made him a polarizing figure to many hoops fans, but it’s his birth name that has been garnering the most attention.

His last name is difficult to enunciate for some, but it’s his first name that has been building steam. In fact, the U.S. Social Security Administration reports that an increasing number of parents have decided to name their newborn child “Giannis.”

Via Tom Schad of USA Today:

According to baby name data released by the U.S Social Security Administration late last month, the popularity of the name “Giannis” increased by 135% last year and is up 662% since 2016, when Antetokounmpo was en route to his first all-star appearance.

Fewer than five newborns in the U.S. were named Giannis as recently as 2015. In 2018, according to the data, there were 61 — including five in the state of Wisconsin.

Although the Bucks were eliminated in the Eastern Conference Finals, Antetokounmpo enjoyed a fantastic season. “The Greek Freak,” as he’s known, made 72 appearances with Milwaukee during their 2018-19 regular season campaign, racking up averages of 27.7 points on 57.8 percent shooting from the field (25.6 percent from beyond the arc), 12.5 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 1.5 blocks and 1.3 steals in 32.8 minutes per outing.

The only name to rival “Giannis” in popularity for the calendar year of 2018 was “Baker,” according to USA Today. NFL fans know this name well, as Baker Mayfield is the starting quarterback of the Cleveland Browns.

There were 336 Bakers born in the U.S. last year, more than twice as many as the previous year — including 17 baby Bakers in Ohio alone.