The Milwaukee Bucks front office was kind enough to host a town hall and take questions from fans on Thursday, and it didn’t take long to get the question on everyone’s mind: What’s the deal with Giannis Antetokounmpo’s next contract?
It would shock nobody to learn that the Bucks would love to have the reigning MVP for the rest of his career, but the answer is somewhat complicated.
Milwaukee can offer Antetokounmpo a supermax contract worth $247 million over five years next summer, and at that point it will be up to him if he’d like to stay. The CBA prevents teams offering players with his amount of service time more than 30 percent of the cap, so they couldn’t offer him more money if they wanted.
General manager Jon Horst quickly said that they will offer Antetokounmpo the supermax when eligible, but the Bucks have work cut out for them to make his decision easy in the summer of 2021.
“Bud and I talk about this all the time: It’s our responsibility to create an environment, a culture, a basketball organization where our players want to come to work every day with players that they want to play with every day, and they want to win at the highest level,” Horst said, via Fox Sports Wisconsin. “We’ve taken great steps towards that last year. We’ve continued to build on that, we’re going to continue to build on that, and I think we all fully believe that if we continue to put the right things in place and give Giannis the right opportunity, he loves Milwaukee, he loves the state of Wisconsin, and I think he’ll be a Buck for a long time.”
The Bucks have already had to make tough decisions as key players hit free agency. This summer, they opted to keep All-Star Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez and George Hill over Malcolm Brogdon, and supplemented their roster with Kyle Korver and Robin Lopez.
Plenty of teams — from the Warriors to the Knicks to the Lakers — will be licking their chops for a chance to bring in Antetokounmpo, perhaps the league’s best player. If the Bucks can take the next step and win a championship in the next two years, maybe he’ll stick around for good.
The bad news is that Toronto did just that, and even they couldn’t stop Kawhi Leonard from leaving for the Los Angeles Clippers.
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