Giannis Is What Happens When N.B.A. Dreams Come True
All hell broke loose when center Larry Sanders broke his thumb, engaged in a nightclub brawl, threw a bottle of champagne, adding to the perception of the Bucks as completely dysfunctional. It was humiliating for Sanders, who had just signed a four-year, $ 44 million contract extension.
Wounds mounted. DJ Stephens, a reserve keeper, recalled someone on the bench saying, “There’s $ 60 million just sitting there at the end of the bench. I can’t even play because they are injured. He must have laughed – things were going so badly.
It didn’t help that this was the year of the Arctic polar vortex, the coldest on record in two decades in Milwaukee. The temperature has fallen below zero 24 times and the wind chill has been labeled “life threatening,” with readings as low as 60 degrees below zero. Experts have warned of potential frostbite to anyone who walks out with bare skin.
The cold was a big adjustment for Antetokounmpo. He didn’t have warm clothes at first. He only had the Bucks tracksuits, which he wore every day. Forward Ersan Ilyasova offered him jeans, as did goalkeeper OJ Mayo and forward Caron Butler. But he would just wear a light puffer jacket or a sweatshirt and sweat in those frigid Milwaukee days. Sometimes Antetokounmpo would hold the arm of Ross Geiger, an assistant video coordinator, when he walked because he was shaking, wearing Nike slides with socks rather than snow boots.
One night, as they left the Cheesecake Factory at around 11 p.m., heavy snow was falling, the start of a blizzard. Inches and inches of snow had already piled up outside as Antetokounmpo and Geiger made their way to the car. The wipers flapped furiously back and forth, but the snow was falling so hard Geiger couldn’t see. At all.
Geiger has stopped. “Don’t stop,” Antetokounmpo said. ” We continue. Antetokounmpo, still strapped to his seat, took his right arm, towel in hand, and rushed forward and stretched his huge wingspan to Geiger’s side, serving as a human wiper, cleaning each side every 30 seconds. Geiger could see enough to get home.
#Giannis #NBA #Dreams #True