Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo was out for Tuesday's season-ending defeat to the Miami Heat owing to a bum ankle -- but he was still the focus of attention immediately after the game.
The Bucks' early exit from the playoffs at the hands of an underdog for the second consecutive year immediately prompted questions about Giannis' long-term future in Milwaukee.
The reigning NBA MVP is a free agent after next season, leading many to wonder whether the Bucks will try to cash in on their all-world asset before a potential date with free agency.
But Giannis apparently dashed the early trade chatter in the moments after his team was sent home from the NBA bubble in Orlando, Florida.
"It's not happening," Antetokounmpo reportedly told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. "That's not happening. Some see a wall and go in another direction. I plow through it. We just have to get better as a team, individually, and get right back at it next season.”
The Bucks, for their part, have adamantly denied interest in trading the Greek Freak, even if they are unable to reach a contract extension with him before next offseason, according to Tim Bontemps of ESPN.
It's unclear what a maximum extension offer would look like for Giannis owing to the league's uncertain salary cap situation during the pandemic, but such a deal is expected to fall somewhere around five years and $220M, according to Sam Quinn of CBS Sports.
Hobbled by an ankle injury that flared up throughout his team's series against the Miami Heat, the 25-year-old Greek Freak watched from the sidelines as their dream season ended in disappointing fashion on Tuesday.