After playing 16 seasons in the NBA, Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James still hasn’t shown any sign of slowing down, but at the age of 34, no one can deny the fact that he is already on the downside of his NBA career. As of now, several NBA players are eyed to be the torchbearer of the post-LeBron era, including Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks. From being the No. 15 overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, Antetokounmpo turned himself into one of the best players in the NBA, and as of now, he is one of the frontrunners to win the Most Valuable Player award in the 2018-19 NBA season.
Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks are currently two wins away from making their first appearance in the NBA Finals since 1974. In a recent interview with ESPN, Antetokounmpo admitted that the Eastern Conference become “open” when LeBron James left the Cleveland Cavaliers for the Lakers in the last free agency. With James under contract with the Lakers until the 2021-22 NBA season, it is less likely that Antetokounmpo will ever see him return again in the Eastern Conference.
However, the latest rumors and speculation suggested that LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo could become teammates before the former’s Lakers contract expires. The idea was floated by Steve Popper of Newsday, who revealed that a person familiar with the Lakers’ process told him that there’s a bigger reason why they hired Jason Kidd to be part of their coaching staff. The Lakers reportedly think that the presence of Kidd could make them an attractive destination for Antetokounmpo when he becomes an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2021.
“It is just speculation right now, but one person asked me if I knew why Kidd was there and as I guessed at his relationship with LeBron James or his ability to tutor Lonzo Ball, the person familiar with the Lakers process said something else: that Kidd was brought to Los Angeles to attract Giannis Antetokounmpo to the Lakers when he becomes a free agent in two years when the Bucks star could become an unrestricted free agent. Antetokounmpo played for Kidd in Milwaukee for three and a half seasons beginning in his second season in the league.”
The 2018-2019 NBA MVP candidates:— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 18, 2019
• Paul George
• James Harden
• Giannis Antetokounmpo pic.twitter.com/V2EuJ1VkVH
Jason Kidd has built a good relationship with Giannis Antetokounmpo in the three-and-a-half seasons they spent together in Milwaukee. The idea of reuniting with his former coach and playing alongside LeBron James on one of the most storied franchises in the NBA would undeniably be intriguing enough for Antetokounmpo to possibly leave the Bucks in the 2021 NBA free agency.
However, as of now, there is no clear sign that Antetokounmpo is planning to part ways with the Bucks. Also, it’s worth noting that last summer, in an interview with Colin Cowherd of Fox Sports, as reported by Bleacher Report, Antetokounmpo said that there’s “no, no way” he would be joining the purple and gold.