Giannis “Greek Freak” Antetokounmpo lit up the Los Angeles Lakers for 47 points last night in a 109-102 victory.
Antetokounmpo scored his highest total through the first 15 games of the season. It’s also the most points he’s erupted for since putting up 50 points against the Phoenix Suns in Game 7 of the 2021 NBA Finals.
“I wanted to be the aggressor out there,” said Antetokounmpo. “Wanted to initiate the contact, get in the paint, make the right play and just play with an edge out there.”
In only 36 minutes of action, Antetokounmpo put on a dazzling performance with nine rebounds and three assists to go along with 47 points. He shot an impressive 18-for-23 from the floor and knocked down 3-of-4 3-point attempts. He also shot 8-for-11 from the free-throw line.
Despite some of the NBA’s top scorers struggling to adapt to the latest batch of rule changes, Antetokounmpo continues to dominate, averaging 28 points, 11.1 rebounds, and 5.8 assists per game. He also has the second-highest PER rating in the league at 31.93.
The Bucks started the season 6-8 and slipped to two games under .500 before the Lakers came to Milwaukee last night. Antetokounmpo and the Bucks locked up a big win to end a two-game skid and a stretch where they lost four times in their previous five games.
It’s obvious that the Bucks struggled with a championship hangover after delivering the franchise its first championship in 50 years. However, the NBA is playing a complete 82-game season for the first time since the pandemic started, so there’s still plenty of time for the Bucks to get out of the early hole they’ve dug themselves into.
The Bucks are the fourth-highest team on the NBA Futures board at +900 odds to win the 2022 NBA championship, and are +380 odds to win the Eastern Conference. Despite sensational starts by the Cleveland Cavs and Chicago Bulls, the Bucks are the favorite at -285 odds to win the Central Division.
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