Giannis Antetokounmpo thinks Bucks were disrespected by All-Star selections
Giannis Antetokounmpo will be a team captain for the NBA All-Star Game, and Milwaukee Bucks teammate Khris Middleton will also be part of the festivities. However, in Antetokounmpo’s mind, that’s not good enough for the team with the NBA’s best record.
Antetokounmpo cited Eric Bledsoe and Brook Lopez as other players who he felt deserved All-Star nods and suggested that the NBA still does not respect the Bucks enough.
“I want to be honest. I feel like at times that we don’t get as much respect and it’s OK, we haven’t earned anything, at the end of the day,” Antetokounmpo said Friday, via Eric Woodyard of ESPN. “I think [Eric Bledsoe] should’ve made the team. We have a great team. We have guys that don’t play a lot of minutes.
“Bled could average 20-25 points if we actually played a lot of minutes but we didn’t. He’s sacrificed also, a lot for this team and is one of our leaders,” he continued. “Not just Bled, and Brook [Lopez] also. I wanted Bled to be on the team, the whole team wanted Bled to be on the team because he’s definitely deserving, but this team is unselfish.”
Antetokounmpo undermines his own point here. Perhaps Bledsoe could have huge numbers if he played more, but he doesn’t. He averages 26.3 minutes per game and scores 15.5 points per game in that span. Those aren’t All-Star numbers. Neither are Lopez’s 10.1 points per game in 26.4 minutes per night.
The Bucks are great because guys like Bledsoe and Lopez accept these roles and contribute immensely. That does not make them All-Stars. It makes them an exceptional and well-rounded team. The lack of All-Star selections doesn’t necessarily mean they’re being disrespected, especially when Giannis isn’t the only member of the team to make it. There are other players who should be far more aggrieved by their All-Star snub than anyone from the Bucks who didn’t make it.