The Knicks are just hours away from the biggest game of the season in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Miami Heat. However, sports media is in a tizzy about whether the Big Apple could be the future home of one of the NBA’s best players.
After the Heat knocked off the top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks in the first round of the playoffs, there has been speculation about whether the team can continue to move forward in the long term with a roster built around Giannis Antetokounmpo.
While it would be a shock to see Giannis leave Milwaukee, tensions are high after another early playoff exit. Head coach Mike Budenholzer has been fired, and Giannis gave a pointed answer at the end-of-season press conference when asked if this season was a failure.
While Gianni’s response was candid and shone a light on the unreasonable pressure we often put on athletes and sports franchises to not be happy with anything other than a title, the discussion also highlighted some of the tension mounting in Milwaukee.
It was enough for Brian Windhorst, who famously predicted the Jazz would tear down their team after trading Royce O’Neale to the Brooklyn Nets, to state that the biggest story in the NBA this offseason will be what’s happening in Milwaukee. Do the Bucks believe they can build a consistent contender while keeping Giannis around for the long haul or would they prefer to trade him to a big-market team like the Knicks?
Windhorst was quick to point out that he believes Milwaukee will exhaust all efforts to do so, but he also indicated that if they were unable to feel good about a long-term pairing, the Knicks could be a team to watch for Giannis.
“Is Giannis going to extend?…league is watching…New York Knicks, for example, they’ve got 97% of their attention on the Miami Heat, 3% of their attention on Milwaukee [gestures] ‘What’s going on over there?”
Brian Windhorst ESPN: “Is Giannis going to extend?…league is watching…NY Knicks, for example, they’ve got 97% of their attention on the Miami Heat, 3% of their attention on Milwaukee [gestures] ‘what’s going on over there?’…”
Stephen A Smith: ”..Not this summer, but… pic.twitter.com/YnZY2A1m3r
— New York Basketball (@NBA_NewYork) May 5, 2023