Game On!…with Rob Kriete – DECEMBER 16

My awesome wife uses our birthdays, our anniversary, and several other important dates that I should probably know to use weekly for her lottery numbers. Hey, it seems like voluntary taxation to me, but I always supported it, thinking the lottery money goes to public education. Alas, for every lottery dollar that is earmarked for education, another dollar is removed. Ultimately, public education gets zero in funding increases due to the lottery in Florida, despite what the billboards brag. Nonetheless, we continue to “volunteer” for the “taxation” weekly with the hopes of one day playing a game I will call “Mortgage-Be-Gone” for my friends and family!

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Giannis Antetokounmpo, the superstar small, and sometimes power, forward of the Milwaukee Bucks, can play any games he likes with his family and friends after signing the largest contract in NBA history this week for $228 million over the next five seasons. Giannis is an offensive and defensive force on the court.

“The Greek Freak” as he is sometimes referred to became the third-youngest player to win back-to-back MVP awards, behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James. Since joining in 2013-2014 season, Antetokounmpo has increased his points and rebounds per game every season with 29.5 and 13.6 respectively in 2020’s truncated season. Although Giannis now has lottery-worthy wealth, he didn’t win it; he earned it!

Defensively, #34 became the third player to win MVP and Defensive Player of the Year in the same season, joining Hakeem Olajuwon and Michael Jordan. Defense hasn’t been a priority for NBA superstars since Jordan retired, making Giannis a throwback-type player to many of us (getting) older fans. Antetokounmpo hustles on both ends of the court, making him a fan favorite throughout the league and the number one selling jersey in the NBA.

His goal of bringing an NBA Championship to Milwaukee, in fact the entire state of Wisconsin, seems realistic when Bucks fans enjoy an energetic, passionate player who makes teammates around him better, the hallmark of a great player. Giannis Antetokounmpo has the opportunity to be among NBA legends when his career is over, and I suspect that Milwaukee will find the $228 million contract to be money well spent, especially if they win their first NBA Championship since 1971.

For those of you who play the lottery, I wish you winnings of an Antetokounmpo level!
Happy holidays, and be safe, everyone.