Dec 16, 2020
It was a normal Tuesday for Giannis Antetokounmpo, outside of his inking a big business deal. He ate dinner with family, visited a Buy Buy Baby store to shop for toys and clothes for his infant son, Liam, and then went home and fell asleep, only to wake up for practice again the next day.
Of course, that was after he signed a $228 million supermax extension with the Milwaukee Bucks, the largest contract in NBA history.
Reflecting Wednesday on his goals for the next five years, Antetokounmpo said with a smile, “Have kids and to have a championship. That’s all I want.
“I just want to have kids, being able to raise my kids, and win a championship,” he continued while speaking to reporters. “After that, my life’s complete. I can retire in five years. Nah, I’m joking.”
Although the Bucks fell short of the NBA Finals in 2019-20, Antetokounmpo became the third-youngest player to win back-to-back MVP awards, after Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James, and the third player to win MVP and Defensive Player of the Year in the same season, joining Hakeem Olajuwon and Michael Jordan.
Antetokounmpo’s agent, Alex Saratsis, told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that the extension will be for the full five-year, $228 million supermax and includes an opt-out after the fourth year. Antetokounmpo’s max contract would have been for four years and $145 million if he had gone elsewhere, but Milwaukee is where Antetokounmpo said he wants to stay.
“The way that this city has supported me and my family has been amazing since day one, since the day I walked in the Cousins Center gym and Bradley Center also. It’s been amazing. I was 18. I’m 26 right now. All I know is Milwaukee,” Antetokounmpo said. “When I came here, all I knew is that this is a city that loves basketball. It’s a city that … we have more things to do now, but when I came here, we had a lot of things to do, so I could just focus on basketball, and it’s a place that I want to be. It’s a place where I want to raise my kids, and I feel good here. I feel that my family feels good here, so I’m good.”
Khris Middleton was the first teammate to call and congratulate Antetokounmpo on his contract.
Antetokounmpo said he consulted his mother throughout the process before securing a deal that’ll create generational wealth, if managed properly.
“I talked to my mother, asked her, did she want to move? She said, ‘No.’ So I said, ‘OK, cool. I’m just going to sign the deal then.’ But, no, this is the place I want to be,” Antetokounmpo said. “This is my home. This is my city. I want to represent Milwaukee, and I want to do this for the next five years.”
Antetokounmpo (+450) currently has the second-shortest odds to win the 2020-21 MVP award, trailing only Dallas’ Luka Doncic (+400), according to Caesars Sportsbook by William Hill.
However, he made his goal crystal clear: a championship.
“I think we can get better. I believe we can be better. We’ve got better,” Antetokounmpo said. “We have a great team. We have a great culture. I know that I’m working toward that goal. The front office is working toward that goal, so I’m good. I’m happy. I think everybody’s on the same page.
“At the end of the day, you’ve got to look at the past. We’ve gotten better every single year. In my opinion, the last two years were realistically the two years where we fight for a championship. The years before that, there wasn’t championship years, so it’s not going to be easy.”
While Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer was behind the wheel Tuesday, he received text messages from his sons, Will and John, alerting him to Antetokounmpo’s long-term commitment and prompting instant excitement.
“It was a don’t-run-the-red-light moment and kill yourself,” Budenholzer said Wednesday. “So in the midst of the excitement, I was able to honor the red light and stop and do a little screaming and yelling with my boys.”