2x NBA champion and Finals MVP Kevin Durant congratulates the Milwaukee Bucks organization for winning their 1st title since 1971.
The Milwaukee Bucks are the 2021 NBA champions. This is the city’s first NBA championship in over 5 decades. The Bucks, who were initially down 0-2 in the series, won the next 4 consecutive games.
Giannis Antentokounmpo was crowned the Finals MVP. The Greek Freak had one of the best Finals performances in the history of the league. The former DPOY averaged 35.2 PPG, 13.2 RPG, 5.0 APG, 1.2 SPG, and 1.8 BPG on an impressive 61.8% shooting from the field.
The Milwaukee superstar became the 7th player in NBA history to have 50-points joining the league of Michael Jordan and LeBron James in doing so.
Many analysts and former players claiming that Giannis winning a title would put him ahead of Kevin Durant and LeBron James.
“If Giannis takes it to another level and wins this championship, and wins Finals MVP, then I think we ought to give him the credit as being the best player in the game of basketball. Dethrone LeBron James, Kevin Durant and whoever else.”
— First Take (@FirstTake) July 14, 2021
Also Read: “Joining a super team would’ve been the easy way, but this is the hard way”: Giannis Antetokounmpo takes a subtle shot at Kevin Durant and LeBron James after winning the 2021 NBA championship
Nets superstar Kevin Durant recently took to Twitter to give the Milwaukee franchise their flowers. The Nets were very close to beating the Bucks in the conference semi-finals, with Durant playing the best basketball of his career.
Nothing but respect for the Milwaukee Bucks franchise, the city of Milwaukee and those loud ass fans. Incredible playoff run fellas!
— Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) July 21, 2021
The semi-final encounter between Giannis Antentokounmpo and Kevin Durant
The eastern conference semi-finals had lived up to its expectations, with the series going down till the wire. Though it looked like the Nets would sweep the Bucks initially, Giannis and co flipped the switch beating the Nets in Game Seven at their home.
There is no denying that Kyrie Irving’s injury in Game Four and James Harden having a premature return from hamstring injury did help the Bucks have the edge in the series.
However, Giannis’ performance in the series cannot be overlooked as he averaged 31.9 PPG, 12.9 RPG, 3.6 APG, and 1.0 BPG shooting 57.4% from the field.
Durant averaged 35.4 PPG, 10.6 RPG, 5.4 APG, 1.6 SPG, and 1.1 BPG on a 49.7% shooting from the field. Thus silencing his critics, who have often accused him of joining super teams.
KD and Giannis have always had good words to say about each other.
“He is a force and I have never seen anything like him and he could end up being the best player in the league,” said Durant when asked about the Greek freak.
The admiration is mutual, with Giannis expressing on several occasions that KD is the best player in the world.
Below are some interesting stats that Giannis achieved this year that put him ahead of KD.
Highest average game scores in an NBA Finals
1. Giannis Antetokounmpo (31.9 in 2021)
2. Shaquille O’Neal (30.6 in 2000)
3. Kevin Durant (30.3 in 2017)
4. Shaquille O’Neal (30.1 in 2002)
5. LeBron James (29.6 in 2017)
5. Michael Jordan (29.6 in 1993)
— Andy Bailey (@AndrewDBailey) July 21, 2021
The NBA’s 15 most popular jerseys for the second half of the season … topped by LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kevin Durant, Luka Doncic and Jayson Tatum: pic.twitter.com/5nmnI8Fvjg
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) July 14, 2021
It will be interesting to see these teams square up against each other in the coming 2021-22 season, with Kyrie Irving and James Harden being healthy.