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Giannis Antetokounmpo: Can the Highest-Paid NBA Player Get Any Better?

Giannis Antetokounmpo is the highest-paid NBA athlete. He plays for the Milwaukee Bucks, earning around $45 million per year. His success on the basketball court has earned him a place in history and a wealth of support from fans. He has a massive 8.4 million followers on Instagram, 1.1 million Facebook followers, and 1.4 million Twitter followers.

This post explores Antetokounmpo's sporting roots and discovers why he's the highest-paid NBA player. As can be seen on sites like howtobet.com, Antetokounmpo is a favorite on the court and in the bookies. He has even been dubbed the "Greek Freak" in recognition of his roots and talents.

Giannis Antetokounmpo's sporting roots
Giannis Antetokounmpo was born in Greece to Nigerian parents who had immigrated to the country. His sporting roots can be traced back to Filathlitikos in Athens, Greece, where he began playing competitive basketball for youth teams. He began playing basketball in 2007 and was playing competitively by 2009.

Back in 2011, Antetokounmpo began playing for the Filathlitikos senior team. At this point, he was playing in the third division, semi-professional Greek B Basket League. He moved up to the second division, Greek A2 League, in the 2012-13 season. He then entered the 2013 NBA draft, where the Milwaukee Bucks selected him 15th overall.

What NBA teams has Giannis Antetokounmpo played for?
Giannis Antetokounmpo signed his rookie contract with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2013. He made his NBA debut in October of the same year. At just 18 years of age, he was one of the youngest ever NBA players.

Antetokounmpo agreed to a $100 million, four-year contract extension with the Milwaukee Bucks back in 2016. His fourth season playing for the Bucks is considered his breakout season and the moment he began ascending to stardom. He received the NBA Most Improved Player Award in recognition of him further increasing his statistical output during the 2016-17 season.

Antetokounmpo has remained with the Milwaukee Bucks throughout his NBA career and has not played for another NBA team. He re-signed with the Bucks in December of 2020, agreeing to a five-year contract extension worth a staggering 228 million dollars. This is the most lucrative contract in league history.

Why is Giannis Antetokounmpo the highest-paid player in the NBA?
Giannis Antetokounmpo has achieved an impressive array of accolades as evidence of his skills and achievements. He was the NBA Most Valuable Player twice in 2019 and 2020 and the NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 2020. This makes him one of only two players in NBA history to achieve both of these by the age of 25 – the other being Michael Jordan.

He is five times NBA All-Star in 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021. In 2017, he was awarded NBA Most Improved Player. He has achieved All-NBA selection four times; in 2019 and 2020, it was the All-NBA First Team and, before that, the All-NBA Second Team in 2017 and 2018.

Also, he was awarded Euroscar European Player of the Year in 2018. Early in his professional career, he made NBA All-Rookie Second Team in 2014.

Can Giannis Antetokounmpo get any better?
In 2019, before signing his latest contract with the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo stated that he thought he could do a lot better. He said, at the time, that he believed he had only reached around 60% of his basketball potential.

The following season, the superstar finished with a 31.86 player efficiency rating, an all-time record. As a player that continues to improve with each passing season, it won't be surprised if we learn, in future seasons, that we haven't seen the best of him yet.