Kobe Bryant challenged Giannis Antetokoumpo to win the NBA’s Mvp award before his tragic, and unexpected passing. Giannis won back to back mvps in 2019, and 2020, and now is one game away from possibly obtaining the coveted finals mvp award after winning his first NBA title. Giannis has been dominating the league with routine numbers like 29 points 14 rebounds with 5,6 assists and a few blocks to go with it. He has proven his impact on the game, but has came up short in the playoffs every season until now. In the eyes of many, a players individual accomplishments and regular season accolades are not validated without the elusive NBA title.
Many will still have asterisk vibes when thinking of the circumstances that Giannis and company faced on their journey to the crown. It appears that everything worked out in the Bucks’ favor with the exception of Giannis’ hyper extended knee, which did sidelined him for a few games. The Bucks did take 7 games to beat a Nets team without 2 of its 3 superstars in Kyrie Irving, and a hobbled James Harden. The Sixers playing with a hobbled Joel Embiid were eliminated by the young overmatched Hawks. The Bucks are probably playing the 4th best team in the western conference in their finals appearance. The Lakers were missing Anthony Davis, the Nuggets missing Jamal Murray, and the Clippers missing Kawhi Leonard.
It may be unfair to give Giannis that criticism being that there have been significant injuries year after year that has decided the outcome of each finals. Jrue Holiday, a southern California native, has emerged as a star in this playoffs, with already a reputation of being on of the best two way players in the game. Khris Middleton has always shown flashes of greatness, and it has continued throughout this playoff run. He has been up and down, but did come though big in the Bucks biggest games this year. Giannis wins this ring, he can temporarily take the crown as the NBA’s best player, until next year when everyone else is healthy.