NBA rumors: Giannis Antetokounmpo soldiering on despite knee pain

Jim Owczarski: Giannis Antetokounmpo said his knee was bothering him in the second half after this play vs. the #Jazz and it was suggested he not return to action: “But it’s not the time. It’s not the time to do that. … This is the time to lead.” pic.twitter.com/wwfTfgxVKr

More on Giannis Antetokounmpo Injury

Giannis Antetokounmpo (hyperextended left knee). Recovery: Antetokounmpo hyperextended his knee during Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Atlanta Hawks, and although he played each game of the NBA Finals, it's unclear how much he's still dealing with the lingering effects of that injury. He told a Greek television channel recently that his knee was "still hurting," but he said he felt good at the start of Bucks training camp while acknowledging he will need to listen to his body early on. The Bucks held him out of their first 5-on-5 practice last Tuesday. Return: It's unclear whether this injury will cause Antetokounmpo to miss any time during the regular season, but the Bucks are likely going to manage him carefully as he ramps up during the preseason.
Jim Owczarski: As for Giannis Antetokounmpo, it's easy to forget he suffered that scary-looking knee injury in the Eastern Conference Finals. #Bucks GM Jon Horst said the Finals MVP needs no offseason procedures: "He's fine. Can't explain it, but he's fine."
Tim Bontemps: Mike Budenholzer says Giannis Antetokounmpo is moving well and feeling good and that he’s getting “a little bit better every day.” It’s now 15 days out from his hyperextended knee, and there’s been one game in the past six days entering Game 4 tonight.
Malika Andrews: Giannis Antetokounmpo said he felt “great” playing tonight. “I thought my knee was stable.” He adds his knee wasn’t in pain. Over the last week he’s done pool sessions, elevated his knee, got treatment and was rehabbing “24 hours a day.”
Marc J. Spears: Giannis said he felt great and no pain.
Jim Owczarski: Giannis Antetokounmpo said he thought he wrecked everything in his knee in Atlanta. As for tonight he said several times he felt no pain vs. the #Suns. He said he can’t predict how he’ll be tomorrow, but expects to feel better in Game 2. pic.twitter.com/Rkw5okRjsC
Malika Andrews: Giannis Antetokounmpo said he hasn’t watched the replay of his injury. “But when the play happened, I thought I would be out for a year. So, I’m just happy two games later I’m back.”
Michael C. Wright: Monty Williams said the Suns planned for Giannis to play in Game 1. "That's what we expected. We were planning for their best and Giannis is their best."
Duane Rankin: Giannis game-time decision, says Mike Budenholzer. #Suns #Bucks #NBAPlayoffs #NBAFinals
Kellan Olson: Giannis Antetokounmpo testing out that left knee pregame pic.twitter.com/EmitlIjikd

http://twitter.com/KellanOlson/status/1412546308406005762
Austin Kent: Giannis Antetokounmpo still listed as 'questionable' as of the 5:30 PM injury report. We're now three hours away from Game 1 of the NBA Finals. Who are we rooting for?
Mike Vorkunov: Bucks co-owner Marc Lasry says it's up to Giannis Antetokounmpo and the team's medical staff if he'll play in Game 1 of the Finals against the Suns. "I'm pretty sure he'll play in the series," he said on CNBC today. "The question is when."
Mark Medina: Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said Giannis Antetokounmpo "had a good day and is making good progress." But Budenholzer said he doesn't have an expectation on if he will play in Game 1 or not. Budenholzer added it's not clear to what extent Giannis will partake in today's practice
Antetokounmpo, 26, underwent an MRI and subsequent examination today by team physician Dr. Carole Vetter of the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin health network. The MRI confirmed the earlier diagnosis.
Eric Nehm: Bud, on GA on bench: “I just know historically it’s impossible to keep him off the court. It’s impossible to keep him away from his teammates, keep him away from his team. My guess is he probably wants to try to play and if not let his teammates know that he’s there for them.”
Eric Nehm: Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer with no further update on Giannis Antetokounmpo after the game. “He was in the locker room with the guys and addressed the group.” - Budenholzer
Tom Haberstroh: If Giannis misses any games due to injury, he’d be the 10th All-Star who has been sidelined for at least 1 game this postseason. Anthony Davis James Harden Kyrie Irving Kawhi Leonard Donovan Mitchell Joel Embiid Mike Conley Jaylen Brown Chris Paul Previous playoff-high was *6*
LeBron James: Awww nah man! WTF @Giannis_An34
Jim Owczarski: Giannis Antetokounmpo is probable to play tonight for the #Bucks with left calf tightness while Bogdan Bogdanović is questionable with right knee soreness for the #Hawks

http://twitter.com/JimOwczarski/status/1409277975149912065
Barry Jackson: Giannis Antetokounmpo probable for Game 4 with groin soreness. No Heat player on injury report except Oladipo, who's out after surgery
Adrian Wojnarowski: Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo will return to lineup vs. Brooklyn today (3:30 PM ET, ABC), sources tell ESPN. The two-time MVP left Thursday's game with right ankle sprain and missed Friday's victory over Bulls. NBA Countdown w/ @MariaTaylor, @Jalen Rose and me at 3 ET on ABC.
Eric Nehm: Bucks injury report for tomorrow's game against the Nets: Giannis Antetokounmpo - probable - right ankle sprain
Eric Nehm: The Bucks have submitted an injury report for tonight's game against the Hawks, the second night of a back-to-back obviously. Giannis Antetokounmpo - Questionable (left knee soreness) Donte DiVincenzo - Question (right toe soreness)
Jim Owczarski: Some good news for the #Bucks on the court - head coach Mike Budenholzer said Giannis Antetokounmpo and P.J. Tucker participated fully in practice today. In terms of playing vs. the #Timberwolves, that will depend on how they respond to the work today.
The scene was quite familiar to fans who have watched the Bucks’ starters celebrate their teammates’ success at the end of blowout victories in the last two seasons with one notable exception: Antetokounmpo was not wearing a jersey. Instead, Antetokounmpo was wearing a black Bucks hooded sweatshirt and a pair of black joggers as he watched from the sidelines as he missed his fifth consecutive game because of left knee soreness.
“We were talking about it before the game,” Middleton said after putting up 21 points, eight rebounds and five assists in Sunday’s win. “He said he hasn’t missed this many games in a row in his career. He’s itching to get back out, so hopefully he’ll be back out there soon.”
Following shootaround before the Pacers game, The Athletic asked Connaughton about Antetokounmpo’s impressive ability to stay healthy throughout his career and why he has always been able to return to the floor quickly after an injury. “Work ethic,” Connaughton said. “I feel like the misnomer is when you get injured, you need rest, like your body will heal itself and what I’ve seen since I’ve been in the NBA is that is actually the opposite.”
Throughout his time in Milwaukee, Budenholzer has often used the term “aggressively cautious” in regards to how they attempt to manage injuries as an organization. Antetokounmpo’s injury has proven to be an interesting test to that greater philosophy. When Antetokounmpo initially sustained the injury, the Bucks diagnosed it as a “left knee sprain” and sat him for the next game. After that his name no longer appeared on the injury report, but then he looked passive against the Celtics before missing another game against the Knicks due to “left knee soreness”. Antetokounmpo once again came off the injury report for the start of the west coast trip before ultimately landing on the injury report again following the game in Portland and missing the following five games.
With 17 games left to play, just three games separate them from the Nets and 76ers at the top of the Eastern Conference and 4.5 games separate them from the fourth-place Hawks. Budenholzer, however, claims the standings do not come into play in their decision-making in regards to playing Antetokounmpo or any of their players while injured. “Mostly no, but to say we are not aware of what you kind of described would not be accurate either,” Budenholzer said before losing to the Hornets with a short-handed roster on Apr. 9. “I think we’re just mostly conscious about trying to keep our guys healthy…I would say it’s just way more trying to see how our guys are feeling, what they’re doing and less about standings and different things like that.
Brad Townsend: 12:30 injury report still lists Giannis as doubtful for Bucks tonight. For Dallas, Burke is probable, Kleber is questionable, out are Redick, Cauley-Stein and Terry. No mention of Porzingis, which presumably means he's available tonight.
Eric Nehm: Bucks injury report for Thursday night's game against the Mavericks: - Giannis Antetokounmpo - doubtful (left knee soreness) - P.J. Tucker - OUT (left calf strain)
Eric Nehm: Giannis Antetokounmpo is not on the Bucks’ injury report for tomorrow’s game against the Celtics. The Bucks’ injury report: Bryn Forbes - Probable (right toe sprain) PJ Tucker - Doubtful (left calf strain) Rodions Kurucs - OUT (abdominal strain)
Kane Pitman: Milwaukee injury report update for tomorrow vs. Boston. Giannis Antetokounmpo - Questionable (left knee sprain) Bryn Forbes - Questionable (right toe sprain) PJ Tucker - Probable (left ankle sprain)
Kane Pitman: Giannis says he felt lost being stuck on the sidelines: “I would play with one leg if I had to..I don’t care.” Says he wanted to play but he respects the organisation putting his health over the game and says “that’s big for me.”
Kane Pitman: Budenholzer on GA: We couldn’t let Giannis go out there. He’s not ready, he’s not healthy, we can’t put him at risk. Giannis would always play, he wants to be there for his teammates so really, really hard for Giannis but I think it was pretty clear for everyone except Giannis..”
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May 19, 2022 | 12:59 am EDT Update

Suns GM believes Deandre Ayton will be back

Jones told Burns & Gambo on Wednesday that he believes Deandre Ayton will be back with the Suns next season. “Deandre had an amazing season and he’s progressed every year and improved every year,” the GM said. “He’s been here and so he’s a big part of what we do. His future with us is something we will address at the proper time which is in the future. He’s a free agent and I’ve said all along, he’s about the same things we’re about which is winning. We’ll address it at the proper time.”
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On possible supermax deal for Devin Booker and rookie extension for Cam Johnson. If Booker makes All-NBA this year, he’ll be eligible for a four-year deal worth $211 million while Johnson is up for a rookie extension heading into his fourth NBA season: James Jones: “That’s a part of the business. As your team improves, typically your payroll increases. We’re focused on improving the team and those guys, they deserve the credit. They deserve the accolades and the financial rewards that come with being good players and productive players. It doesn’t preclude us from doing anything. We’re not talking about a luxury tax issues or avoiding those things. That’s not something that’s going to prevent us from continuing to build this team and keep this team together.”
“Had a great year, just one of those nights,” said O’Neal as Ayton finished in Sunday’s Game 7 against Dallas with a career playoff-low five points on 2-of-5 shooting. “Phoenix had a great year, just one of those nights. This is a classy organization. This is a classy team. Can’t say bad things about them. They played hard. Again, even great players have one of those nights.”   O’Neal, and fellow TNT NBA analysts Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley discussed Ayton’s future with the Suns after the top overall seed was eliminated by the Dallas Mavericks in Sunday’s Game 7 in Phoenix. “You’ve got to re-sign Ayton,” Barkley said.
Storyline: Deandre Ayton Free Agency
“(McGee) played well, he was a great addition to the team, but it all hinges on Deandre Ayton,” Barkley said. “It’s him and Booker. They are the guys going forward. Chris is going to be 38 (years old). He’s going to get the ball to the right person, but it’s time for Booker and Ayton. You can’t have a bad game like they did. Chris, he had a tough night, but Ayton and Booker, they’ve got to play well.”

Warriors crush Mavericks to take 1-0 lead in Western Finals

Once Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson slowed down, caught their breath and stopped rushing shots, the Splash Brothers got on a roll that proved too much for Dallas to stop. Especially because Andrew Wiggins worked end to end to make sure Luka Doncic couldn’t get going. Curry had 21 points and a game-high 12 rebounds, Golden State held Doncic in check and the Warriors beat the Mavericks 112-87 on Wednesday night for a 1-0 lead in the Western Conference finals. “Just make him work, that was the main thing,” Wiggins said.
5 hours ago via ESPN
Doncic scored 20 points but shot just 6 for 18 and 3 of 10 from deep. He made back-to-back 3-pointers late in the first half to get his team within 54-45 at the break, but Curry and Thompson heated up and helped the Warriors pull away in the second half. “A great job. That’s it,” Doncic said. “They did a great job.” Jalen Brunson scored 14 points but missed all five of his 3s for the surprising Mavs, who stunned the top-seeded Suns in a 123-90 thumping in Game 7 on Sunday in Phoenix.
5 hours ago via ESPN
“They did a really good job. Wiggins picking him up full court,” Mavs coach Jason Kidd said. “They went box-and-one, they went zone. We understood coming into the series that we were going to see that. We’ll go back and look at the video and see what we can do better.” Stopping Doncic, who was averaging 31.5 points in the playoffs, is the tall task this time after the Warriors already handled two-time reigning MVP Nikola Jokic of Denver in the first round, then Ja Morant early last series before his knee injury. “I thought Wiggs was fantastic,” coach Steve Kerr said. “Doncic is as difficult a cover as there is in this league. … It’s important to make him work. He’s so good. Any great player in the league you’re trying to limit the damage that they do.”
5 hours ago via ESPN