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Fear the Deer in the near future

The+Milwaukee+Bucks%26apos%3B+Giannis+Antetokounmpo%2C+middle%2C+converts+a+layup+despite+pressure+from+the+Minnesota+Timberwolves%26apos%3B+Karl-Anthony+Towns%2C+left%2C+and+Gorgui+Dieng+in+the+first+half+on+Friday%2C+Dec.+30%2C+2016%2C+at+Target+Center+in+Minneapolis.+The+Timberwolves+won%2C+116-99.+%28Aaron+Lavinsky%2FMinneapolis+Star+Tribune%2FTNS%29
The Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo, middle, converts a layup despite pressure from the Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns, left, and Gorgui Dieng in the first half on Friday, Dec. 30, 2016, at Target Center in Minneapolis. The Timberwolves won, 116-99. (Aaron Lavinsky/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS)

The Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo, middle, converts a layup despite pressure from the Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns, left, and Gorgui Dieng in the first half on Friday, Dec. 30, 2016, at Target Center in Minneapolis. The Timberwolves won, 116-99. (Aaron Lavinsky/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS)

Photo by TNS

Photo by TNS

The Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo, middle, converts a layup despite pressure from the Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns, left, and Gorgui Dieng in the first half on Friday, Dec. 30, 2016, at Target Center in Minneapolis. The Timberwolves won, 116-99. (Aaron Lavinsky/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS)

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“The Greek Freak” is a name that most Milwaukeeans know. Giannis Antetokounmpo is a rising star in the NBA. He is the first player to finish the regular season in the top-20 in all major stats, which include points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks. And he’s only 22. Needless to say this is only the beginning for him and the Milwaukee Bucks.

Antetokounmpo emerged on the scene as a strong forward/guard for the Bucks in 2013. In his fourth season (2016-2017) with the Bucks, he not only made the All-Star game, but was also a starter; a feat not accomplished by a Milwaukee Buck since 1984, and the first Milwaukee All-Star since 2004.

Antetokounmpo is not the only talent on the young Bucks team. Malcom Brogdon is in contention for Rookie of the Year. He has averaged 10.2 points as a guard with 4.2 assists. If Brogdon won Rookie of the Year, it would be the first Buck since 1970 when Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) won the award.

Another rookie this year, Thon Maker, is averaging 6.6 points in the playoffs compared to his average 4 points in the regular season at forward/center. At 7 feet 1 inch, Maker is a force to be reckoned with.

Khris Middleton started the season on the disabled list after injuring his hamstring, but once he returned, the Bucks went 18-10 to make the playoffs for the second time under Coach Jason Kidd. Middleton, guard, averaged 14.7 points in the regular season. Kidd said in an article on Bleacherreport.com about Middleton, “For whatever reasons, he’s underrated, so he doesn’t get a lot of attention, and he just goes about his business. He gives a lot of people confidence when he’s on the floor.”

Photo by TNS
The Los Angeles Clippers’ J.J. Redick, left, applies defensive pressure on the Milwaukee Bucks’ Khris Middleton in the fourth quarter on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015, at Staples Center in Los Angeles. The Clippers won, 103-90. (Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Just as Middleton returned to the Bucks, Jabari Parker tore his ACL for the second time in three seasons. Before that, Parker was averaging 20.1 points per game, his highest average yet as a Buck.

Greg Monroe, “Moose,” came to Milwaukee before the 2015-2016 season and said he chose the Bucks over the Los Angeles Lakers and the New York Knicks because the Bucks had the best shot of making the playoffs.

The Bucks are in playoffs for the second time under Kidd. Milwaukee is the youngest team in the playoffs with the average age 23.5 years. “We’re a young team. It starts with playing hard and trusting one another,” Kidd said on the Milwaukee Bucks Facebook page about his team.

Many say that experience wins championships, but the Bucks motto is “Own the Future” and that’s just what they are doing.

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Fear the Deer in the near future