Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo embraces late season challenges

Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks were feeling good following a huge victory over the league-best Phoenix Suns on Sunday.

The games aren't going to get any easier for the reigning champions, but Antetokounmpo is ready to embrace the challenges down the stretch of the season. 

"Obviously we have the hardest schedule left," Antetokounmpo said after the game. "You can take it in a bad way, or you can take it in a good way.

"Just playing a lot of games that they're close games, and we learn how to execute down the stretch and who's gonna get the ball? Who's gonna set the screens? Which plays we gonna run? Just getting ourselves ready for that atmosphere and that environment on the road or at home."

Greek Freak's dominance continues

Giannis Antetokounmpo #34 of the Milwaukee Bucks during their NBA game against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday February 8, 2022

Antetokounmpo has just been on a whole new level recently, as he's averaging 31.1 points, 14.4 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 1.6 steals, and 1.4 blocks per game over his last seven games at the time of this writing.

His season stats are right on par with the seasons in which he's won MVP, but because of how dominant he's been, we've been so accustomed to his greatness that we just don't even take his candidacy as league MVP as seriously anymore.

The media and basketball fans alike are looking for their new "Giannis." A new feel-good story around guys like Nikola Jokic and Joel Embiid will keep the entertainment side of the NBA going.

Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo

But when it comes to the "Greek Freak," there are no shortages of feel-good stories to go around. He came from a background where nothing was given to him.

He had to help support his family but selling trinkets on the streets of Athens, Greece, and then he came into the NBA as a raw, skinny kid who had no true identity coming into the league.

Fast forward less than a decade, Antetokounmpo is now a two-time MVP, a Finals MVP, Defensive Player of the Year, and a member of the NBA 75th Anniversary Team. Not bad for a kid who wasn't even drafted in the lottery in his draft class.

The Bucks haven't quite dominated this season as they've done in recent years, but the chemistry from last season is still largely there, and Antetokounmpo has proven he can carry his team to a championship. Don't sleep on Milwaukee repeating this season!

READ MORE: Who are the 10 best players never to win the NBA Championship?

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