Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo finally received the go-ahead to play for his native Greek National Team this summer, which hopes to qualify for the Rio De Janeiro Olympics.
Antetokounmpo, also known as “The Greek Freak,” was in discussions with the Bucks management about the complexity and risk of allowing him to play additional games— out of fear of injury.
The Athens-born basketball star broke the news on his Instagram account that he had the full support of the Bucks, telling his Greek fans that “The decision was made! I can’t never leave your side I’ll be there for you!”
The situation was complicated by Antetokounmpo’s looming contract situation and importance to the Bucks future.
He is in line for a lucrative contract extension this summer, possibly a five-year maximum deal that could be in the neighborhood of $140 million. So it’s natural the Bucks wanted to protect any investment they will make.
The Greek team will compete in an Olympic qualifying tournament in Turin, Italy, from July 4-9.
Giannis Antetokounmpo’s Instagram announcement: