At first glance, this just doesn’t make sense at all. Why would the alpha dog of the best team in the league join a broken dynasty who currently has the worst record in the NBA?
Then again, “The Splash Brothers” Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are expected to be 100 percent ready come next season. Adding an immovable force like Giannis to the equation would simply be another dynasty in the making.
Given their success at the moment, the possibility of The Greek Freak bailing from Milwaukee may sound farfetched and too good to be true.
However, as history suggests, a coup of this magnitude is possible for the Warriors. They’ve done it before when they successfully managed to lure another MVP like Kevin Durant to the Bay Area.
And it’s not like these rumors don’t have some basis to it all. The signs of Giannis’ intrigue with the Dubs have been evident for quite some time now.
Antetokounmpo’s rather friendly post-game chat with Curry back in January continues to stir speculations to this day. His penchant for using the Warriors in NBA 2K has also been worrisome for The Cream City fan base.
The Bucks brass, meanwhile, would be out of their mind to give up a generational talent like Antetokounmpo. The reigning NBA MVP is once again primed to win the award this year, notching 29.6 points, 13.7 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 1.0 steal, and 1.0 block in 57 games.
As great as he has been already, people often sleep on the fact that Giannis is just 25 years old and hasn't even yet reached his full potential just yet.
Antetokounmpo is now on the tail-end of the four-year, $100 million contract extension he signed with the Bucks in 2016. After this season, he will be eligible to sign a whopping five-year, $253 million contract extension to stay in Wisconsin.
But nothing is set in stone and Giannis could also as easily opt-out and become a free agent in 2021.
The Bucks (53-12) are the favorites to emerge out of the East this year when (and if) the season resumes at some point. The team’s success (or possibly lack thereof) would play a huge factor in whether the Greek star decides to stay in Milwaukee for the long term.
Then again, the Bucks won’t have much of a choice afterward on the event that Antetokounmpo decides to test free agency.
If he walks away, they get absolutely nothing in return for the years they spent honing him to becoming the superstar that he is now.
Considering that the Warriors have reportedly been “preparing for years” to acquire Giannis, the Bucks would surely receive a mammoth haul if they decide to ship him off next season.
Milwaukee, however, should only consider this as a drastic last resort if all goes wrong. The only time this move would be acceptable is if Giannis somehow forces their hand by threatening to sit out games, or if he pulls an Anthony Davis and blatantly tells the team he won’t be staying.
Giannis, however, doesn’t seem to be the type to go to such great lengths. The man even abhors load management and tries to play as many minutes as he can.
In hindsight, the Bucks would be better off not doing anything drastic at this point. As much as the pressure of keeping Giannis keeps rising, they still hold all the cards at the moment.
It will be wise for Milwaukee to just play out the string and focus on winning the title this season. The Bucks must strive to add more talent in 2021 in a bid to keep Giannis happy and persuade him to stay in 2021.
The same goes for Giannis. If he really does want to be a Warrior so badly, demanding a trade at the moment would mean taking a step back.
Why would he force a trade from a title contender while also weakening the team he's going to?
A Dubs trade for Giannis would obviously warrant a massive exchange which may include the likes of Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins, and multiple draft picks. By choosing to wait one year and finishing his obligations in Milwaukee, he could simply choose to sign wherever he wants to and keep that team’s core intact.
In retrospect, choosing to trade away Antetokounmpo out of fear would be the biggest blunder in Bucks’ franchise history.
A talent like that, after all, doesn’t just fall out of trees. Milwaukee should not make the mistake of prematurely pulling the trigger, especially since they don’t have to do so anyway at the moment.