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“The greek freak injury” is a phrase that was used in the movie “I Still Feel It, and I Think I’m Going to Feel It Until I Die.” The phrase refers to an injury that will never heal.
During last year’s championship run, Giannis Antetokounmpo stunned NBA fans with a couple of great moments. With a 50-point, 14-rebound, five-block effort in Game 6 of the Finals against the Phoenix Suns, he gave the Milwaukee Bucks their first championship since 1971.
Jrue Holiday’s alley-oop in Game 5 of the series is legendary. One of the most legendary moments in NBA Finals history is his block on Deandre Ayton in Game 4.
The fact that Antetokounmpo’s leg twisted backward during Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals gets lost in the commotion. It seemed like his playoffs — and Milwaukee’s championship chances — were over.
Giannis, on the other hand, miraculously healed in two weeks and was ready to play in Game 1 against the Suns. Nonetheless, he recognized that it was a sensation that would likely stay with him for the rest of his life.
In Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals, Giannis Antetokounmpo’s postseason seemed to be over.
Last year’s playoffs saw Milwaukee sweep the Miami Heat in the first round. As a result, the Bucks will face the Brooklyn Nets in the Eastern Conference’s most anticipated playoff matchup.
James Harden of Brooklyn suffered an injury in the opening minute of the series. He ultimately came back, but he was a shadow of his former self. In Game 4, Kyrie Irving was injured in the second half.
Kevin Durant was left on an island to attempt to defeat Milwaukee. And he was on the verge of doing so.
In the last three games of that series, KD and Giannis battled head-to-head. In Games 5-7, Durant averaged 43.0 points and 12.3 rebounds. Antetkounmpo had 34.7 points and 14.0 rebounds for the season.
Milwaukee eventually won Game 7 and proceeded to the conference finals, where they will play the resurgent Atlanta Hawks, thanks to Khris Middleton’s help.
The series itself wasn’t the story; the Bucks prevailed in six games. However, Milwaukee’s two-time MVP hyperextended his knee, which seemed to be a serious injury. His season was supposed to be finished.
In the Finals, though, The Greek Freak rebounded to average 35.2 points and 13.2 rebounds, and his epic 50-point Game 6 lifted the club to victory.
Giannis stated that the feeling of his knee bending in the incorrect direction would always be a source of discomfort for him.
The Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo reacts after hurting his right ankle against the Brooklyn Nets. | Matteo Marchi/Getty Images
It was a horrifying injury. However, Antetokounmpo recovered, and his dominance in the Finals put his knee issue on hold.
But that wasn’t far from the thoughts of the eventual Hall of Famer. That’s a feeling he’d prefer to forget, but one he’ll likely experience for the rest of his life, as he told GQ’s Zach Baron.
My leg was in the other direction. I’m still dealing with the aftermath, the severe stress. I’m still aware of it, and I believe I’ll be aware of it till I die.
Giannis Antetokounmpo discusses his leg injury in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals in 2021.
In the Finals, Milwaukee was defeated 2-0 by Phoenix. Maybe Giannis’ knee has anything to do with it.
However, by Game 4, he didn’t seem to be bothered by it.
When he hedged on Devin Booker, spun around, and sprang off one foot to stop Ayton at the rim? He took a leap from the same leg.
Antetokounmpo had a playoff run to remember.
In the Bucks’ must-win Game 3, the 2019-20 Defensive Player of the Year scored 41 points. Over the remaining three games, he averaged better than 36 and 12.
It was fantastic to see what The Greek Freak did throughout last year’s playoffs. All of it was incredible: Ayton’s block, Holiday’s lob, the overtime Game 7 versus Brooklyn, and Durant’s performance.
However, carrying a team that hadn’t won a championship in half a century after (in his words) your leg turned the wrong way makes a legendary playoff run mythological.
Basketball Reference provided all stats.
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Giannis Antetokounmpo is the youngest player in NBA history to have a triple-double. He is also one of the most talented players in the league, but he has been struggling with injuries this season. The “is giannis playing tonight” is asking if Giannis will play tonight.
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