Giannis Antetokounmpo, the team’s superstar, was severely injured in Game 1, dealing the Milwaukee Bucks a devastating setback. Antetokounmpo, known as the “Greek Freak” for his superhuman athleticism, had to exit the game due to a back injury.
His absence immediately hindered the Bucks, as they could not keep up with their opponents. As they await the severity of Antetokounmpo’s injury, fans and experts alike question if the Bucks can recover without him.
Giannis Antetokounmpo Benched with Back Pain in Game 1
Giannis Antetokounmpo crashed to the floor as he drove to the hoop. And just like that, the top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks’ chances of winning the NBA Finals took a significant hit.
After getting fouled in the first quarter, Antetokounmpo landed awkwardly on his backside and had to be helped by the court. He did not return to Sunday’s 16 April playoff opening for the Bucks against the 76ers. The Miami Heat defeated the Milwaukee Bucks 130-117.
“There was an X-ray clear here,” Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “We’ll monitor him and see how he does, how he wakes up, how he feels the rest of tonight and tomorrow.”
The Bucks will play Game 2 of the series in Milwaukee on Wednesday, and they’ll be hoping their two-time MVP is feeling better by then.
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“We have to wait and see what the doctors say, most importantly what Giannis says,” Budenholzer said. “Certainly, we’ve been blessed with him being resilient and quick to heal, but you’ve just got to take it daily, see how he’s doing, and see how he feels.”
After getting fouled by Miami’s Kevin Love with 4:13 left in the first quarter, Antetokounmpo got up slowly but stayed in the game to take his free throws. After 2 1/2 minutes, he picked up his second foul but remained in the game.
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Antetokounmpo was taken out of the game and sent to the locker room. With 9:56 remaining in the second quarter, he came back into the game, but he left again with 8:33 remaining in half and didn’t come back.
“Didn’t look comfortable, confident,” Budenholzer said. “It felt like the right thing (to keep him out).” After 11 minutes of play, Antetokounmpo had six points and three boards.
There were injury concerns on the Heat’s end as well. Late in the second quarter, Miami’s Tyler Herro suffered a broken hand on his right hand.
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