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#pounditTuesday, May 21, 2024

More troubling news emerges about Giannis Antetokounmpo’s calf injury

Giannis Antetokounmpo wearing headphones

May 13, 2022; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) shoots during warmups prior to game six of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs against the Boston Celtics at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Milwaukee Bucks are preparing to begin their first-round playoff series against the Indiana Pacers on Sunday, and the big question is whether they will get any help from Giannis Antetokounmpo. That may depend on how long the series goes.

Antetokounmpo has been receiving treatment for a non-contact calf injury he suffered in a game against the Boston Celtics on April 10. While the injury could have been a lot worse given how it looked, it is still a significant concern for the Bucks.

NBA reporter Shams Charania said on Stadium’s “Playoff Preview” show Thursday that there is a chance Antetokounmpo could miss up to a month. The two-time MVP is not expected to be ready for the start of the Pacers series, and he may not play in it at all.

“I’m told this injury could be anywhere from 2-4 weeks, potentially. We know his superhuman ability, but that clearly puts his status for this series in jeopardy,” Charania said. “The Bucks, Giannis, they also have to have some level of caution in being careful with this calf injury. Already this season Giannis has had Achilles tendonitis, a hamstring injury and now this calf strain about a week ago. The last thing the Bucks and Giannis would want is for him to get back and rush on the floor with a calf injury, not being 100% and then potentially tweaking that or leading to even worse injuries.”

Without Giannis, it is fair to wonder if the Bucks can even beat Indiana. The young, high-tempo Pacers won four out of five against Milwaukee during the regular season and created some major matchup problems for Doc Rivers’ team. The Bucks needed a historic performance from Giannis in the one game they won.

If the Bucks get off to a good start in their series against the Pacers, they will probably be more inclined to hold Antetokounmpo out. Should they lose the first two games or fall behind 2-1, Giannis may start pressuring them to allow him back on the floor.

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