NBA

Giannis Antetokounmpo Won’t Regret Leaving the Bucks for This NBA Title Contender

The talk around the Milwaukee Bucks has quickly shifted toward Giannis Antetokounmpo’s future. The Bucks’ discouraging playoff exit has put more spotlight on Antetokounmpo‘s next contractual decision. It has also seen rumors flare up about one NBA title contender possibly making a strong run to acquire him.

Giannis Antetokounmpo’s future with the Bucks

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The Bucks have fallen to another disappointing playoff exit after losing in five games to the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

It has moved the discussion toward Giannis Antetokoumpo’s future in Milwaukee. He’s set to enter the final year of his four-year, $100 million contract, which has yet to garner traction toward a long-term extension. The opportunity to offer a super-max deal worth approximately $221.6 million over five years will likely be on the table in the offseason.

However, there is no indication that he would accept the deal. It has put forth scenarios that he may entertain playing elsewhere once he hits free agency in 2021. The discussion has also shifted toward an NBA title contender holding some significant interest in acquiring him.

Clippers hold significant interest in trading for Giannis Antetokounmpo

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There is still much that can change in the coming months as the Bucks look to secure Giannis Antetokounmpo to a new deal.

It has also sprouted conversations around potential landing spots if the Bucks view the situation has one that will end in his departure. With that in mind, Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer has reported that the LA Clippers will make a strong push to trade for Antetokounmpo as Doc Rivers has a strong affinity for him.

At a quick glance, it seems like an impossible scenario given the team is already committed to lucrative deals with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. The Clippers are currently project to have no salary-cap space for next season. It will require them to do some significant maneuvering around with their core group behind their star players.

It would be interesting to see what LA could and would offer for Antetokounmpo. Meanwhile, his arrival to the Clippers to play alongside George and Leonard would make them the clear-cut title favorites. The only question is whether the reigning MVP is comfortable going that route given what he’s stated publicly.

More options will come forth

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Regardless of what the Bucks’ fate would have been in this year’s playoffs, Giannis Antetokounmpo’s contract situation is the lingering matter.

The 25-year-old has shot down conversations around possibly playing for another team. He has already told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports that he doesn’t plan on asking for a trade. However, it doesn’t mean that the Bucks won’t entertain offers if a long-term deal doesn’t seem feasible.

The ball is in Antetokounmpo’s court to choose what he wants to do next in his career. He has an opportunity to garner a record-setting contract with Milwaukee, but he will have plenty of options available to play elsewhere. The Bucks will do anything to keep him, including possibly exploring a trade for Chris Paul.

The cards will be on the table first with what Antetokounmpo does with the expected super-max contract offer. Milwaukee will operate from that situation moving forward to put the best team around him to win an NBA title. Only time will tell what will unfold with the Bucks as their star forward holds the franchise’s future in his hands.