Giannis on NBA globalization: “It didn’t start with me, it was Drazen, Parker, Dirk and Pau”

2020-01-23T17:42:43+00:00 2020-01-23T19:03:36+00:00.

Antonis Stroggylakis

23/Jan/20 17:42

Giannis and the Milwaukee Bucks are participating in the first-ever NBA game in France.

By Nikos Varlas/

PARIS– Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo commented on Zion Williamson, the no. 1 pick of the 2019 draft, making his long-anticipated NBA debut Wednesday (22/1).

“I wasn’t able to watch it. When I woke up, I watched the highlights and I saw that he scored 17 straight points. It’s amazing,” Giannis told reporters in the press conference held ahead of the NBA Paris game, where the Bucks will face the Charlotte Hornets Friday (24/1). “I’m really excited for him. I’m happy he came back healthy. The advice I give to them is to have patience, work hard and manage your health. Don’t rush it. Don’t rush the process. He’s going to a beast. The whole league knows he’s gonna be a beast. Just take it to step by step day by day, be healthy.”

Thie match between the Bucks and the Hornets marks the first time that the NBA holds an official regular-season game in France. Antetokounmpo was also asked if he considers himself a part of the globalization of the NBA.

“It didn’t’ start with me,” Giannis said. “Back in the day, it was Drazen Petrovic. Then Tony Parker, Dirk Nowitzki, Pau Gasol. The NBA is doing a great job. We had the game in London five years ago, now we have the game in Paris. Hopefully, this is something the NBA does every year. Playing in different countries and guys from around the world can enjoy us. It’s a great move by the NBA that gives people accessibility. It brings people closer to us.”

Watch what the reigning NBA MVP also said about NBA Africa, adapting in Paris, his increased 3-point shooting and the Bucks’ “WWE-like” pregame routine.