After a well-deserved break back home in Greece, Giannis Antetokounmpo was exactly where you'd want him to be on Friday.
Earlier today, @G_ante34 got a workout in with the coaching staff at the training center. #BasketballNeverStops pic.twitter.com/oVkHqacreA— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) May 2, 2014
All that work this summer will hopefully translate into major improvement next fall, when Giannis will be facing something he didn't face last fall: expectations. Not that anyone is demanding stardom just yet--keep in mind that he's just a couple months older than both Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker, and a full nine months younger than Joel Embiid. But the Bucks (and us fans) will certainly be looking for a clear uptick in both production and consistency, after a rookie season that saw him flash plenty of talent (see above) but below-average bottom-line production.
Can he be more decisive off the dribble, avoiding his nagging penchant to retreat or go sideways at the first sign of resistance? Will we see some semblance of an off-the-dribble jumper, something we saw almost none of this season? Can some added strength help him better fight through screens defensively while aiding his finishing offensively? Was the three point touch he flashed after the all-star break (39.6% on 19/48 shooting) a small-sample outlier or indicative of what's to come?
We'll have to wait another six months before we start to get real answers, though realistically we're still years from knowing just how good Antetokounmpo will be in his prime. Which is a good cue to note that patience is a virtue, life is like a box of chocolates, etc.
As for the here and now: we'll hopefully see Giannis donning a Bucks' jersey in Vegas in July, which will probably also feature his older brother Thanasis suiting up for someone. Though older, shorter and less offensively gifted than Giannis, the 21-year-old Thanasis has NBA athleticism, was a third-team All-Defensive selection for the D-League's Delaware 87ers and is considered a possible second round pick in June (#60 in DX's latest mock).
h/t @ShafftyBro and DownToBuck
It's way too early, but we have to ask: how good will Giannis ultimately be?
This poll is closed
Superstar. Perennial all-star and the cornerstone of a title contender.
All-Star-caliber. Second banana on a good team, but not quite among league's elite.
Above-average starter. Quality, versatile player but more of a complementary guy.
OK starter/rotation guy. Better than what he is now, but not by much
Rotation guy. Basically what he is now.