After the big trades in the offseason, many teams have the hope of competing for the championship in the new season, and it also gives major stars new plans for the future. Since rejecting the Bucks’ early contract extension, Antetokounmpo’s whereabouts have aroused speculation, and now he also stated in an interview that if there is a better chance to win the championship, then he must seize this opportunity. Antetokounmpo’s statement also creates variability in the future of the Bucks.
Led the team to win the championship in 2021, allowing Antetokounmpo to officially assume the position of the number one active player. After that, the Bucks and Antetokounmpo are also looking for opportunities to win the championship again. In order to ensure the normal rotation of the team’s core, the Bucks retained most of the main rotation, while also adding more tactical execution rights to Antetokounmpo. Under the leadership of Antetokounmpo, the Bucks have always been the team with the best record in the league and the team with the most championship potential.
But this balance was broken last season. The Bucks surged forward in the latter part of last season’s regular season and entered the playoffs with the league’s best record in the regular season. However, in the first round they faced the Heat, who were eighth in the Eastern Conference, but stumbled. The unscrupulous Heat caught the Bucks off guard, and Antetokounmpo was targeted by Heat players, which eventually led to the team being hacked. At the same time, Antetokounmpo also saw the team’s shortcomings.
Although the Bucks have prepared many helpers for Antetokounmpo, the team still lacks fresh blood and more stable pitchers, and these cannot be solved overnight. When the Bucks management happily offered Antetokounmpo an early contract extension, Antetokounmpo had new plans for the future, so he rejected the contract. In addition to ensuring the flexibility of their future direction, it also makes the Bucks a little embarrassed.
According to Antetokounmpo’s current salary standards, if he leaves the Bucks, there are not many teams that can accept him, and the Heat and Knicks still have a certain amount of salary space. But in comparison, Antetokounmpo has little hope of going to the Heat, and if he chooses to join the Knicks, the Knicks’ team strength is far from enough to help Antetokounmpo compete for the championship. If the team fails to improve due to tactical rotation problems, it will only fail.
Antetokounmpo wanted to leave his old club because he saw the success of other players, especially Durant, who won two championships after leaving the Thunder. But Antetokounmpo is not Durant. Durant can succeed because of his excellent shooting ability and his non-possessing style of play that can adapt to any tactics. Although Antetokounmpo is equally good at both ends of the offense and defense, he has no shooting ability and is a player who needs the support of a tactical system.
In order to cultivate Antetokounmpo, the Bucks built a perfect enough team around him, and the technical characteristics of these players are also very suitable for Antetokounmpo. Once Antetokounmpo leaves, he will completely lose his original tactical position. In comparison, Antetokounmpo should still stay in the Bucks and continue his career here.