The Milwaukee Bucks are the future for back-to-back NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. At least, that seems to be the prevailing theory among the agents polled by The Athletic.
“Everything he says publicly is that he’s staying. I tend to believe, but I know these things can change quickly,” one agent said. “These are humans, not machines; 70 percent chance he stays, but he’s waiting to see what they do.”
Antetokounmpo is eligible for a supermax contract extension and the Bucks have made it clear that’s type of offer they intend to make. If Antetokounmpo turns it down, he will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of next season.
“Any other player in the NBA at his level I’d say no, but him, he stays,” another agent said.
Yet another told The Athletic that he’s “hopeful” Antetokounmpo stays with the Bucks because it would be “good for the league.”
One thing that does seem for certain — Bucks GM Jon Horst will try to retool the roster around the star forward to make the Bucks a true championship contender. They finished with the best regular-season record in each of the past two seasons, but failed to reach the Finals either time.
“I think he’s just going to play this contract out for next year, and then he’s going to give Milwaukee every opportunity to build talent around him,” one agent said. “I think his natural inclination would be to stay and I think most of the pressure would be from the exterior that he’s going to react to.
“People think that he’s in a better place. The other part is he’s going to have to shoot the ball better. But they’ve got to get some shooters around him, that’s for sure.”
Yet another agent cited Antetokounmpo’s reputation as being a loyal person. And even Antetokounmpo himself said he has no intention of seeking a trade.
“I don’t think he’s a person that leaves,” the agent said. “He’s the two-time MVP. It’s not really a stretch to say he’s the type of guy that wants a team built around him and he isn’t going to go some place to be somebody’s helper in that situation. He’s going to make people come to him and help him there and it’s a quarter billion dollars potentially that we’re talking about here.”