Watching John Wall and Giannis Antetokounmpo on the court Saturday night, casual fans might not realize they both play point guard.
At 6-11, Antetokounmpo has the stature of a forward or center, while Wall is about what you'd expect for a point guard at 6-4. But the differences pretty much end there, or so Antetokounmpo thinks.
In the locker room after the Wizards beat the Bucks 110-105, the Greek Freak rejected the idea that his towering frame makes his game different from Wall's.
In fact, he thinks they're pretty similar players.
"John Wall is a great player," Antetokounmpo said. "He likes to do a lot of things I like to do, too."
The Bucks point guard went on to list the things he and Wall both do well.
"Finding open guys, he likes to play in transition. And his game is like, our games are similar. But our body type is a lot different. We like to drive to the rim, make plays in the paint."
Antetokounmpo, who turned 22 less than a week ago, said he tries to learn from watching Wall, a three-time All-Star.
"He’s a great player and I’m always trying to watch his game, to take a lot of things out of him, too," Antetokounmpo said.
Wall can't match Antetokounmpo's length in terms of rebounding and shot blocking, but their games do have a lot in common.
In the Wizards locker room, Kelly Oubre said the key to defending Antetokounmpo was preventing him from driving to the basket at will, a skill Wall has perfected.
"Don't give [Antetokounmpo] what he's used to having. He's a driver, he's a slasher. Just stay in front of him. That's definitely what we tried to do."
While the Bucks guard was still effective with 28 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists, the Wizards forced him into seven turnovers. Wall finished the game with four, but struggles periodically with coughing the ball up.
In short (or tall), the two players are more similar than they look.
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