Los Angeles Clippers vs. Milwaukee Bucks
7:30 p.m. PST
March 24, 2014
FOX Prime Ticket
1. The NBA is holding a redraft today. How long does Giannis Antetokounmpo have to wait to hear his name called?
Jeremy Schmidt, Bucksketball, (@Bucksketball): I’d say second or third. I know everyone thinks Giannis is the cat’s pajamas, but it turns out we’ve probably been overstating it a bit. I don’t think he’s going to fail in the NBA, but there’s been tons of hyperbole about him all season. That said, getting a potential Andrei Kirilenko third in the draft (after Michael Carter-Williams and potentially Vic Oladipo) isn’t too bad.
Eric Buenning, BrewHoop, (@ericbuenning): However long it takes Cleveland to turn in their selection to David Stern. Giannis would have been such a fun complement to Kyrie Irving. Also, I am not okay with this re-draft happening. Who do I have to talk to in order for this to not happen? I like how things turned out the first time.
Fred Katz, (@FredKatz): Second. We all love Giannis, but I’ll take the raw player with upside after the more polished one whose ceiling may be just as high. Victor Oladipo, you and your far-too-energetic basketball are going No. 1. Giannis, you and your hands that make every guy feel awful about himself can go second.
2. How surprised were you to learn that Giannis had never tried a smoothie until this year?
Schmidt: I did spend months wondering about it leading up to the draft. To me, it was really one of the BIG QUESTIONS that needed answering about him. So when I found out he hadn’t, I didn’t really know how to feel. But now I know he has, because he’s pounded the joke into the ground, as younger people often do when they stumble upon a joke that people like. How obvious is it that I’m ready for this season to be over? I have so little left for this team. Even Giannis.
Buennning: At first I was surprised, because the typical smoothie recipe seems pretty simple and affordable. What I did not consider that a family in the Antetokounmpo’s situation probably wouldn’t put a blender high on their list of priorities, so ultimately I’m not terribly surprised. Also, if you haven’t heard of a smoothie before, how do you know that they exist, really? Do people run through the streets, raving about their beverage of blended fruits and juices? These are questions I need answers to.
Katz: I just need to know if there’s a Jamba Juice in Milwaukee. Has Giannis been there? Can we get him there? How about Red Mango? Is he into putting a gluttonous amount of cinnamon into everything? Because if he is, he might love Red Mango. I think there’s one in Madison, WI. Maybe Giannis can just run there.
3. What is the No. 1 trait Giannis needs to improve on as his game develops?
Schmidt: He’s going to have to be more aggressive, especially if Milwaukee can’t add much talent around him over the next season or two. He VERY rarely initiates offense in the half court, even though he’s a gifted passer. If he could spend the last few weeks of the regular season just working on being a ball-handler in the pick and roll and making decisions either to pass or shoot 20 times a game, I’ll be thrilled.
Buenning: Probably his jump shot/creating off the dribble. He doesn’t need to be a top-level shooter, but I think the more confidence he can build in his shot or making moves off the bounce, the more defenses will have to respect that part of his game. That will only open more lanes up for Giannis, who has already had some success in getting to the rim and drawing fouls.
Katz: Aside from his nickname (isn’t the Greek Freak a little worn out, considering it’s also his brother’s nickname?), it’s got to be his handle. Giannis is still so raw in so many ways, but once he can create a little off the dribble, a bunch of that will change. He’s a good passer, and his shot works enough of the time to show he may be able to develop a decent jumper in the future. If he can learn to create for himself, getting shots for others will likely come naturally.