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How Giannis' supermax extension with Bucks impacts C's

/ by Darren Hartwell
Presented By TD Bank
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The Giannis Antetokounmpo sweepstakes are over before they even began.

The reigning NBA MVP announced Tuesday he is signing a five-year, supermax extension with the Bucks and intends to stay in Milwaukee. The $228.2 million contract is the largest in NBA history, per The Athletic's Shams Charania.

Antetokounmpo was set to become a free agent in 2021, and there was rampant speculation that the NBA's best player could leave the team that drafted him to pursue an elusive NBA championship.

Instead, the 26-year-old wants to chase that championship in Milwaukee -- and that's not the worst news for the Boston Celtics.

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Among Antetokounmpo's top reported suitors were the Miami Heat and Toronto Raptors, both strong Eastern Conference contenders that would have become immediate conference favorites had they landed Giannis.

The Bucks have finished with the best record in the East for two years running but have yet to reach the NBA Finals with Antetokounmpo and still have postseason demons to exorcise.

So, you could argue it's better for the Celtics that the Greek Freak stays in Milwaukee -- where his Bucks lost to Boston in the first round of the 2018 playoffs -- than head to a club with recent NBA Finals experience in Miami or Toronto.

 

Antetokounmpo's announcement also takes another big name off the 2021 NBA free agency board, as he joins several superstars -- including Jayson Tatum -- who signed extensions prior to this season.

That means the market for 2021 free agents may inflate. Fortunately for Boston, the C's have their core of Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Kemba Walker locked up until at least 2022.

So, expect to see plenty of battles between Giannis and the Celtics over the next several seasons.