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Athanasios "Thanasis" Rotimi Antetokounmpo (also spelled Thanassis Greek: Αθανάσιος "Θανάσης" Αντετοκούνμπο, Greek pronunciation: [θaˈnasis] born July 18, 1992[1][2]) is a Greek professional basketball player for the Milwaukee Bucks of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is the older brother of the 2019 NBA MVP, Milwaukee Bucks All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo, as well as Los Angeles Lakers power forward Kostas Antetokounmpo.

Thanasis Antetokounmpo
Basketball match Greece vs France on 02 September 2017 20 (cropped).jpg
Antetokounmpo at the EuroBasket 2017 tournament
No. 43 – Milwaukee Bucks
PositionSmall forward
LeagueNBA
Personal information
Born (1992-07-18) July 18, 1992 (age 27)
Athens, Greece
NationalityGreek
Listed height6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
Listed weight215 lb (98 kg)
Career information
NBA draft2014 / Round: 2 / Pick: 51st overall
Selected by the New York Knicks
Playing career2012–present
Career history
2012–2013Filathlitikos
2013–2014Delaware 87ers
20142016Westchester Knicks
2016New York Knicks
2016–2017Andorra
20172019Panathinaikos
2019–presentMilwaukee Bucks
Career highlights and awards

Early careerEdit

Antetokounmpo began playing youth club basketball with the junior teams of Filathlitikos, in 2008. He then played with the senior men's team of Filathlitikos, in the semi-professional levels of the Greek fourth division (2010–11 season), and the Greek third division (2011–12 season).

Professional careerEdit

GreeceEdit

In 2012, Antetokounmpo began his professional level career with Filathlitikos, of the Greek second division, after previously playing with the club in the Greek minor leagues. During the 2012–13 Greek 2nd Division season with Filathlitikos, he averaged 12.2 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 1.1 steals, and 1.0 blocks per game.[3] He was selected by the coaches to play in the 2013 Greek All-Star Game as a special participant, even though he was not actually selected as an all-star,[4] and competed in the slam dunk contest as players from the second division are eligible to compete in the dunk competition.

After originally declaring for the 2013 NBA draft, he withdrew from the draft on June 17, 2013, along with 17 other players, on the day of the withdrawal deadline.[5] He had originally entered the draft with his younger brother Giannis.

He played four games for Filathlitikos in the 2013–14 Greek A2 League season. In a round 2 game against Ermis Lagkada on October 19, 2013. He recorded 15 points, 8 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 steal in his team's 76–69 win.[6]

Delaware 87ersEdit

On November 1, 2013, Antetokounmpo was selected by the Delaware 87ers with the ninth overall pick in the 2013 NBA Development League Draft.[7] On November 23, 2013, in his D-League debut, Antetokounmpo recorded 14 points, 2 rebounds, and 2 assists, in a 117–106 loss to the Canton Charge.[8] He also competed at the 2014 NBA D-League Slam Dunk Contest.

During the 2013–14 NBA Development League season, he averaged 12.0 points, 4.3 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.2 steals and 1.3 blocks in 50 games.[9] On May 1, 2014, he was named to the 2014 NBA D-League All-Defensive third team.[10]

New York and Westchester KnicksEdit

 
Antetokounmpo with the Westchester Knicks in January 2016

On June 26, 2014, Antetokounmpo was selected with the 51st overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft by the New York Knicks.[11] He later joined the Knicks for the 2014 NBA Summer League where he averaged 3.0 points and 1.8 rebounds in five games. On November 3, 2014, he was acquired by the Westchester Knicks.[12] On April 22, 2015, he was named to the 2015 NBA D-League All-Defensive second team.[13] In 47 games for Westchester, he averaged 13.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.7 steals, and 1.7 blocks per game.[9]

In July 2015, Antetokounmpo re-joined the New York Knicks for the 2015 NBA Summer League where he averaged 6.4 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in five games. On August 7, 2015, he signed with the Knicks,[14] only to be waived by the team on October 23, after appearing in three preseason games.[15] Later that month, he returned to the Westchester Knicks.[16][17] On January 29, 2016, he signed a 10-day contract with the New York Knicks.[18] He made his NBA debut later that night, scoring two points in two minutes of action against the Phoenix Suns.[19] On February 8, New York decided not to renew his contract,[20] and the following day, he returned to Westchester.[21]

AndorraEdit

On August 8, 2016, Antetokounmpo signed with MoraBanc Andorra of the Liga ACB.[22] He played an instrumental role as his team qualified for the first time in 22 years to the ACB playoffs, where they were eliminated in the quarterfinals by Real Madrid. He averaged 7.3 points and 3.8 rebounds per game during regular season, before raising his contribution to 12.7 points and 4.7 rebounds in the playoffs. The Spanish basketball magazine Gigantes del Basket awarded Antetokounmpo with their 2017 "Top 5 Trophy", which goes to the Liga ACB "Most Spectacular Player of the Year".[23][24]

PanathinaikosEdit

On July 11, 2017, Antetokounmpo returned to Greece and signed a two-year deal with the EuroLeague giants Panathinaikos, of Greece's top-tier level Greek Basket League.[25] He was named the MVP of the 2018 Greek All-Star Game. In June 2018, Antetokounmpo won the Greek League championship with Panathinaikos, after beating Olympiacos in the league's finals, after a five-game series.[26] He was named the Greek League's Most Spectacular Player, of the 2017–18 season. On February 17, 2019, he won the Greek Cup title after Panathinaikos defeated PAOK (79:73) in the big final, held in Heraklion Indoor Sports Arena, Crete. On June 14, 2019, Antetokounmpo was crowned Greek Basket League champion with Panathinaikos, for a second year in a row, after they swept Promitheas in the league finals.[27]

Milwaukee BucksEdit

On July 16, 2019, Antetokounmpo signed with the Milwaukee Bucks, reuniting with his brother Giannis, also becoming the second pair of brothers on the Bucks roster, after Brook and Robin Lopez.[28]

National team careerEdit

On May 3, 2016, Antetokounmpo was named in the senior Nigerian men's national team training camp preliminary list for the 2016 Rio Olympics.[29] He declined the offer, choosing instead to play with the senior Greek national team.[30] He was selected to Greece's 12-man roster for the 2016 Turin FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament.[31] He next played with Greece at the EuroBasket 2017. He also played with Greece at the 2019 FIBA World Cup qualification.[32]

Career statisticsEdit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  PIR  Performance Index Rating
 Bold  Career high

Note: The EuroLeague is not the only competition in which the player participated for the team during the season. He also played in domestic competition, and regional competition if applicable.

NBAEdit

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2015–16 New York 2 0 3.0 .750 .000 .000 .5 .0 .0 .0 3.0
Career 2 0 3.0 .750 .000 .000 .5 .0 .0 .0 3.0

EuroLeagueEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG PIR
2017–18 Panathinaikos 33 26 11.3 .528 .286 .583 2.2 .4 .3 .3 3.6 3.8
2018–19 29 9 12.1 .593 .318 .448 1.8 .3 .7 .3 4.2 3.9
Career 62 35 11.7 .560 .306 .523 2.0 .3 .5 .3 3.9 3.8

Personal lifeEdit

 
Giannis and Thanasis playing basketball at a local court in Sepolia, Athens

Antetokounmpo was born in Athens, Greece, to Nigerian parents, and grew up in the Athens neighborhood of Sepolia.[33] His late father, Charles, was a former Nigerian soccer player, while his mother, Veronica, is a former high-jumper.[34] His parents are from different Nigerian ethnic groups—Charles was Yoruba, and Veronica is Igbo.[35] He officially gained Greek citizenship on May 9, 2013,[36] with the official legal spelling of his last name being Antetokounmpo.[37] His oldest brother, Francis, is a professional soccer player.

His younger brother, Giannis Antetokounmpo (b. 1994), was drafted 15th overall in the 2013 NBA draft by the Milwaukee Bucks.[38] With Giannis known as "The Greek Freak", Thanasis was sometimes referred to as "Greek Freak 2",[39][40] although his own nickname was "The Greek Streak".[41] In addition, he's also the older brother of Kostas and Alexis, both of whom also trained with Filathlitikos. Antetokounmpo's mother gave each of her four sons born in Greece, both a Greek and a Nigerian name.[42] Kostas is a member of the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers, while Alexis is currently playing high school basketball at Dominican High School.

In 2017, during the EuroBasket tournament in Helsinki, in which the senior Greek national team was competing, he was nicknamed "The Elevator" by Greek basketball sportscaster Vangelis Ioannou, as well as by his younger brother, Giannis. This nickname was given to him due to his superb athleticism and jumping ability.[43]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ THANASIS ANTETOKOUNMPO Born: 7/18/92
  2. ^ Athanasios ANTETOKOUNMPO Date of Birth 18 Jul 1992 Nationality: GRE
  3. ^ "THANASIS ANTETOKOUNMPO basketball profile – Season: 2012-2013 (Greece)". USBasket.com (in Greek). Retrieved March 16, 2013.
  4. ^ "Όλα τα αστέρια στο All Star Game". Sport24.gr (in Greek). March 16, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
  5. ^ "Regular Season Round 2: Filathlitikos – Ermis Lagkada 76-69". NBA.com. October 19, 2013. Retrieved October 19, 2013.
  6. ^ "Eighteen early-entry candidates withdraw from 2013 Draft". Eurobasket.com. June 18, 2013. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  7. ^ "2013 NBA Development League Draft". NBA.com. November 1, 2013. Archived from the original on February 8, 2014. Retrieved November 1, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  8. ^ "CHARGE VICTORY SPOILS D-LEAGUE DEBUT FOR 87ERS". NBA.com. November 23, 2013. Retrieved November 23, 2013.
  9. ^ a b "Thanasis Antetokounmpo D-League Stats". Basketball-Reference.com. Archived from the original on April 24, 2015. Retrieved May 1, 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  10. ^ "NBA Development League Announces 2013-14 All-NBA D-League Selections". NBA.com. May 1, 2014. Archived from the original on April 13, 2016. Retrieved May 1, 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  11. ^ "2014 NBA Draft Results: Knicks select Thanasis Antetokounmpo with 51st pick". sbnation.com. June 26, 2014. Retrieved October 2, 2014.
  12. ^ "Westchester Knicks Finalize Inaugural Training Camp Roster". OurSportsCentral.com. November 3, 2014. Retrieved November 3, 2014.
  13. ^ "NBA Development League Announces 2014-15 All-League Teams". NBA.com. April 22, 2015. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  14. ^ "Knicks Sign Thanasis Antetokounmpo". NBA.com. August 7, 2015. Retrieved August 7, 2015.
  15. ^ "Knicks Waive Five Players". NBA.com. October 23, 2015. Retrieved October 23, 2015.
  16. ^ "Thanasis Antetokounmpo chooses Westchester, for now". PostingAndToasting.com. October 29, 2015. Retrieved October 29, 2015.
  17. ^ "Westchester Knicks Finalize 2015-16 Training Camp Roster". OurSportsCentral.com. November 2, 2015. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  18. ^ "Knicks Sign Thanasis Antetokounmpo to 10-Day Contract". NBA.com. January 29, 2016. Retrieved January 29, 2016.
  19. ^ "Anthony returns and Knicks hand Suns 13th straight road loss". NBA.com. January 29, 2016. Retrieved January 29, 2016.
  20. ^ "Thanasis Antetokounmpo: Becomes free agent". CBSSports.com. February 8, 2016. Retrieved February 8, 2016.
  21. ^ "Thanasis Antetokounmpo Returns to Westchester Knicks". OurSportsCentral.com. February 9, 2016. Retrieved February 9, 2016.
  22. ^ "Antetokoumpo, energia pura pel Morabanc Andorra". BCA.ad (in Catalan). August 8, 2016. Retrieved August 8, 2016.
  23. ^ Thanasis Antetokounmpo won the most spectacular player award of Gigantes.
  24. ^ Gigante Más Espectacular: Thanasis Antetokounmpo (MoraBanc Andorra) (in Spanish).
  25. ^ "Panathinaikos pens Antetokounmpo on two-year deal". Euroleague.net. July 11, 2017. Retrieved July 11, 2017.
  26. ^ Panathinaikos wins Greek Basket League Championship Final.
  27. ^ Panathinaikos wins 38th Greek championship title
  28. ^ "Bucks Sign Thanasis Antetokounmpo". NBA.com. July 16, 2019. Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  29. ^ "Rio 2016: Oguchi, Oyedeji, Thanasis Make D'Tigers' Training Camp Roster". TheDayLive.com. May 4, 2016. Retrieved May 5, 2016.
  30. ^ Thanasis Antetokounmpo reportedly not interested in playing for Nigeria, he wants Greece
  31. ^ Greek NT squad for OQT is announced.
  32. ^ Greece announce preliminary player list for games against Great Britain and Israel.
  33. ^ Hein, David (March 16, 2013). "Adetokoubo's whirlwind saga just starting". FIBA.com. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
  34. ^ "NBA Rookie Wants To Bring Hope To Greece, And To Milwaukee". NPR.com. September 26, 2013. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  35. ^ Spears, Marc J. (March 5, 2019). "'The Greek Freak' wants to go back to his Nigerian roots". The Undefeated. Retrieved March 8, 2019. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)
  36. ^ "Έλληνες πολίτες οι αδερφοί Αντετοκούμπο". Sport24.gr. May 9, 2013. Retrieved December 31, 2015.
  37. ^ "Giannis Antetokounmpo received today his..." Twitter. May 9, 2013. Retrieved December 31, 2015.
  38. ^ "Bucks Sign First Round Pick Giannis Antetokounmpo". NBA.com. July 30, 2013. Retrieved July 30, 2013.
  39. ^ Corrigan, Drew (February 19, 2014). "Meet Thanasis Antetokounmpo: The Greek Freak, Part 2". DimeMag.com. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  40. ^ "Thanasis Antetokounmpo "Greek Freak 2" 2012-13 Greek Season Mix". youtube.com. April 16, 2014. Retrieved April 16, 2014.
  41. ^ Thanasis Antetokounmpo (The Greek Streak) Is Hosting Block Parties At The Westchester County Center This Season.
  42. ^ Chouinard, KL (January 2, 2014). "Giannis Antetokounmpo's other name". Bucksketball.com. Retrieved April 9, 2016.
  43. ^ "Γιάννης για Θανάση: "Ο Elevator"!". novasports.gr. August 31, 2017. Retrieved September 6, 2017.

External linksEdit