Giannis Antetokounmpo 'is an MVP in our eyes,' Bucks coach says

Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer marveled Thursday night over another Giannis Antetokounmpo exhibition after the Bucks clinched the top seed in the Eastern Conference, declaring, “He’s an MVP in our eyes.”

Antetokounmpo scored 45 points and added 13 rebounds and six assists in a 128-22 victory over the 76ers.

The forward is the favorite to land the NBA MVP award, and Budenholzer has no doubt that his star has earned the honor.

“Giannis, what he does defensively, five blocked shots and 13 rebounds is just a special performance from him,” Budenholzer said. 

“That felt like a statement. He changes the game, the pass to George Hill, the touch on that, finishing, making free throws. He’s an MVP in our eyes, so we’ll keep him.”

Antetokounmpo was impressed with how his team got the job done after Eric Bledsoe was ejected early on after an altercation with Joel Embiid.

“I think the team did a great job keeping its composure,” Antetokounmpo said. “Obviously [Bledsoe] went to the locker room in the first quarter, but everybody stepped up.

“Guys came in, hit big shots, played defense, played hard, and it’s big for us. A lot of guys are missing…it just feels good that we have 12 guys, 15 guys that are able on any given night to step up and help this team.”