Giannis Antetokounmpo redoubled his dedication to the one N.B.A. franchise he has recognized by signing a five-year contract extension price an estimated $228 million from the Milwaukee Bucks.
Six days earlier than a Dec. 21 deadline to both signal the so-called supermax extension or develop into an unrestricted free agent after this season, Antetokounmpo on Tuesday launched a press release by way of his social media channels proclaiming himself “blessed to have the ability to be part of the Milwaukee Bucks for the subsequent 5 years.”
“That is my house, that is my metropolis,” Antetokounmpo wrote.
In a group assertion later Tuesday confirming the deal, Antetokounmpo mentioned: “You took an opportunity on us eight years in the past and now placing my signature on a contract like that is unreal — but it surely’s all due to exhausting work. That is my house and I’m going to proceed working exhausting and do my greatest to make the Bucks, our followers and town proud. Let’s have enjoyable, win and make these years depend.”
The Bucks chosen Antetokounmpo, who was born and raised in Greece by Nigerian mother and father, with the fifteenth general choose within the 2013 draft, regardless of Antetokounmpo’s restricted skilled expertise within the Greek second division. Antetokounmpo has blossomed past all expectations to win back-to-back Most Invaluable Participant Awards and, by committing his long-term future to the Bucks, has delivered the group its most important victory since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Oscar Robertson led Milwaukee to its lone N.B.A. championship in 1970-1971.
“This is without doubt one of the nice days in Bucks historical past,” Peter Feigin, the Bucks’ group president, mentioned throughout a digital assembly organized by the Milwaukee Press Membership shortly after Antetokounmpo revealed the information.
Antetokounmpo, who turned 26 on Dec. 6, is beneath contract for yet another season on his present deal and, as a result of he signed an extension, can’t be traded by the Bucks earlier than subsequent season. The extension is the biggest contract in N.B.A. historical past, surpassing the five-year, $207 million contract Russell Westbrook signed to stick with the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder in September 2017. Antetokounmpo’s new deal features a participant choice after the 2024-25 season that might permit him to enter free company one 12 months early.
After profitable M.V.P. honors for the primary time in 2018-19, Antetokounmpo averaged 29.5 factors, 13.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists per recreation final season to repeat as M.V.P. He was additionally named Defensive Participant of the Yr final season, becoming a member of Michael Jordan (1987-88) and Hakeem Olajuwon (1993-94) as the one gamers to win the M.V.P. and defensive participant awards in the identical season.
The Bucks posted the league’s greatest regular-season document in every of the previous two seasons however have had back-to-back playoff disappointments, which led to appreciable apprehension in Milwaukee that Antetokounmpo would possibly move on the extension and select a brand new group subsequent season. After a meek second-round playoff collection loss to the Miami Warmth this summer time, Bucks officers promised Antetokounmpo that they might improve the roster — and so they duly agreed to a commerce in November to amass the extremely rated guard Jrue Vacation from the New Orleans Pelicans.
However a deliberate sign-and-trade cope with the Sacramento Kings to amass the sharpshooting restricted free agent Bogdan Bogdanovic along with Vacation collapsed and, as The New York Occasions first reported, prompted the league workplace to open an investigation. The N.B.A. is exploring attainable violations of its anti-tampering guidelines, because it appeared that the Bucks and Kings had already reached an settlement on a sign-and-trade transaction greater than three days earlier than free-agent discussions of any sort have been allowed to begin. Bogdanovic ultimately joined the Atlanta Hawks after he signed a four-year, $72 million provide sheet with the Hawks that Sacramento elected to not match.
Tuesday’s announcement ended a nervy interval for the Bucks for the reason that Vacation acquisition and the Bogdanovic drama, sparing the small-market franchise from the specter of fixed questions on Antetokounmpo’s future because the Bucks attempt to make it again to the N.B.A. finals for the primary time since 1973-74. After that season, Abdul-Jabbar quietly requested Milwaukee to commerce him, saying he most popular to dwell in New York or Los Angeles. The request finally led the Bucks to commerce Abdul-Jabbar to the Los Angeles Lakers in June 1975.
In a 2017 interview with The Occasions, Antetokounmpo described himself as “a low-profile guy” who had no real interest in “all these flashy cities like L.A. or Miami.”
“I don’t know if I could possibly be the identical participant if I performed in these cities,” Antetokounmpo mentioned then.
Groups akin to Miami, Toronto and Dallas had been managing their payrolls in hopes of constructing a free-agent run at Antetokounmpo in 2021, however to the Bucks’ nice reduction, groups in flashier markets received’t get that likelihood.