NBA 2020 MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo Shares Draft Night Memories
NBA MVP of 2020, Giannis Antetokounmpo, has released a video series with Nike Basketball documenting his incredible journey to the NBA. In that series, one episode highlights his draft night in 2013 as this year’s NBA draft is set to take place on Wednesday.
“I remember we got to New York, it’s like, okay, tomorrow’s draft night, please let me just get drafted,” Antetokounmpo said. “That’s all I cared about. Whoever takes me, I’m just going to work as hard as I can and I’m going to be a good player, and I’m going to be able to provide for my family.”
As you know, the Milwaukee Bucks ended up drafting the “Greek freak” with the 15th pick in the 2013 draft and the rest is history.
Antetokounmpo got what he wanted, providing for his family, working hard, and improving every year since. It correlated to this past season, averaging 29.5 points a game, 13.6 rebounds per game, and 5.6 assists a game.
In the “Coming to America” episode, Antetokounmpo also talks about learning to drive, opening up a bank account, and getting into an apartment on his own.
ESPN’s senior NBA insider, Adrian Wojnarowski, has a three-part series talking about Antetokounmpo. Within this series, it includes a story of how an NBA scout discovered the “Greek freak”.
In an ESPN article highlighting this, Woj mentioned how in 2012, New Orleans Hornets international scout Yarone Arbel looked at an email inside his home in Tel Aviv from a Greek agent who “was pitching a buoyant 17-year-old Athenian point guard with long arms and a longer backstory, Giannis Ugo Antetokounmpo.”
Wojnarowski detailed in the article that: “‘Nobody knows about him,’ Georgios Dimitropoulos (agent) wrote Arbel…Before long, Arbel would travel to the island of Crete to scout Antetokounmpo. He fouled out in 15 minutes, scoring one basket. Soon after, Connelly landed in Athens and watched practices and games. More NBA executives started to make the trip to Athens. Milwaukee GM John Hammond traveled in March 2013…The kid kept getting better.”
The series is titled “The Giannis Draft: From The Woj Pod“.
From Giannis being scouted to being drafted by the Bucks to being league MVP, it’s been a wonderful story and the next chapter awaits.
With the NBA season set to tip up just a few days before Christmas, Antetokounmpo is ready as he tweeted: “Is it basketball time yet?”
Almost, 2020 NBA MVP, almost.
Charlie Lapastora is a sports/news multimedia journalist who’s reported, written, produced, anchored, shot video/edited on different NBC, ABC, and FOX shows in multiple TV markets, along with digital & new media companies. Charlie has traveled the country telling national sports, news, feature, and original stories on a cable news network, airing on top 10 TV markets, satellite radio, and digital platforms. He is passionate about his faith, family—being a husband to whom he calls the G.O.A.T. of women—about reppin’ his home state of Michigan and Detroit teams (yes, including the Lions), good coffee, and loves how sports brings people together. He’s traveled the world leading and coaching sports camps and has also worked at the Detroit Pistons and LA Clippers’ NBA teams.