Shams has the contract details. And actually, if you look at the timestamps on both tweets, Shams broke the news before Giannis himself did:
So he’s staying in Milwaukee after all.
The contract has a player option after the 4th year. At that time Giannis will be 30 years old. So Milwaukee is getting the entire prime of his career.
Over the past few weeks it seemed like Giannis was preparing to leave Milwaukee because he had the supermax offer on the table for a while and wasn’t signing it. And it just kept getting closer and closer to the start of the NBA season, which begins a week from today.
The way a lot of people saw it–including myself–was that the supermax was Milwaukee’s best possible offer both now and next offseason, and that if Giannis didn’t sign it now, he probably wouldn’t sign it next summer.
Then again, maybe he was waiting til next offseason to just see how this season went and if he could realistically win a title with that Bucks roster. Still, though, this would not have been a good sign for Milwaukee because it would’ve essentially meant “Win the Championship or he’s gone.”
It was starting to feel like he was leaving.
Turns out Giannis was just taking his time before making the biggest decision of his life. And he’s absolutely got every right to do so. Anthony Davis took a while to re-up with the Lakers.
This is great for Giannis, great for Milwaukee, great for small-market teams and most of all, great for basketball.
Now we don’t have to worry about Giannis going to Golden State and forming another super team. No more “what-ifs” about Giannis going to Dallas and teaming up with Luka and Porzingis, or to Miami.
In an era of unprecedented player movement and where star players seem to gravitate towards a few select cities like LA and NY, the reigning 2-time MVP decides to stay put in Milwaukee. I don’t know the specifics of the contract but $228 million over 5 years breaks down to $45.6 million a year on average. That’s obviously insane money, so good for Giannis and his family.
So all the “Giannis to ____???” NBA Twitter rumors are now dead.
Now that we know Giannis is staying in Milwaukee for the long term, the question becomes: “Can they win a chip?”
They’re coming into the 2021 season with a core of Giannis, Khris Middleton, Jrue Holliday and Brook Lopez. Clearly Giannis felt like this team was good enough to win a Championship this season.
We know they’ll be good in the regular season. They should probably finish with the best regular season record for the third season in a row.
But can they get over the hump in the playoffs? The past two seasons they’ve run into brick walls in the form of Toronto and Miami. Will Jrue Holliday be enough to push them over the top? It remains to be seen. I still think the Lakers are the best team in the NBA coming into the season, and I don’t think Milwaukee has enough to beat them in the Finals if they meet there this July.
But good for Giannis sticking it out in Milwaukee.