As he enters the last season of his current contract with the Milwaukee Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo has a lot to think about regarding his future in the NBA.
The 2x MVP will have no shortage of suitors lined up for his services next summer, but he must first decide whether or not he'll be returning to the status quo.
Even amid the disappointment of the botched Bogdan Bogdanovic trade, the Bucks are still feeling good about their chances to re-sign their star, based on the premise that he's not like the typical superstar "nomads" we're used to seeing today.
“No, the Bucks have remained confident,” said ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. “I have to say this. Since the day the season ended, they weren’t feeling great about everything at that time, but talk to those people. They’re like, ‘Look, Giannis is not like Kevin Durant. Giannis is not like LeBron James. This is a different guy. We believe he is all in with us. We believe he is gonna stay.’ And they have consistently said that.”
This confidence hasn't stopped the Bucks from doing all they can to convince Giannis they're a team he can win with. Despite some questions about how they will perform this upcoming season, some still feel as though they did enough this summer to warrant Giannis' loyalty.
If they do get him to stay, it marks a huge accomplishment for the small-market franchise.
“If Giannis recommits, if Giannis re-signs, whether it’s this weekend or it’s in two weeks, he has until Dec. 21,” Windhorst said. “The Bucks get an A-plus-plus on this offseason. Not necessarily because I think they made the greatest moves, but getting that player to stay with you, to give you runway, is as great as of an accomplishment as a team like the Bucks can have.”
The idea that Giannis differs in ideology from his peers (like LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Kyrie Irving) isn't rooted in nothing. Since his arrival in Milwaukee, he has preached loyalty and maintained humility.
He could very well become the loyalist LeBron and Durant never were, but only time will tell.