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Bucks’ Thanasis Antetokounmpo nets Giannis-like stat line, rave review from Mike Budenholzer

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Milwaukee Bucks forward Thanasis Antetokounmpo will always be overshadowed by his younger and more successful brother Giannis. Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer understands this fact.

Still, that doesn’t mean he’s not a talented basketball player in his own right. Thanasis proved that and more against the New York Knicks at Fiserv Forum on Friday, dropping a career-high 23 points in their 102-96 home loss.

Although the Bucks failed to get the W, coach Bud was all praises for the lesser-known Antetokounmpo brother for his valiant performance, per The Athletic’s Eric Nehm.

“He was great. He puts a lot of time in…He had a little more freedom tonight and did a lot of really good things on both ends of the court, so really pleased with how he played,” Budenholzer said of Thanasis.

With Giannis sitting this one out, his older brother maximized the extended 37 minutes he played against New York. Thanasis made eight of his 15 field goals and showed his improvement from long range by going 4-for-5. He played an all-around game as well, adding 10 rebounds, five assists, and two steals on top of his 23 points.

Thanasis was on fire early on, as he started the game hot and gave the Bucks an early lead in the first period.

The Bucks, however, cooled off in the second half of the contest, but Antetokounmpo kept playing hard despite the big margin at hand. He tried to wake his team up with this heads-up play right before the third quarter horn sounded.

Prior to his career night, Thanasis has only been playing 9.6 minutes per contest, notching 3.2 points and 2.3 rebounds in 33 minutes. Coach Bud, obviously, has a stacked line-up, so it will be hard for Thanasis to get more minutes once his players return to 100 percent. Still, it’s nice to see the older Antetokounmpo come on his own when given the opportunity.