Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo will play in Game 1 of the 2021 NBA Finals, the team announced.
Giannis is AVAILABLE and will start in Game 1 of the #NBAFinals. pic.twitter.com/S9fVRNI5j6- Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 7, 2021
The Bucks star was upgraded from dobutful to questionable just hours ahead of tip-off, before warming up for Game 1.
Antetokounmpo hyperextended his left knee in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals. There was "no structural damage" in his left knee and his ligaments are "sound," according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe.
Here's everything we currently know about Antetokounmpo's injury.
Giannis Antetokounmpo's injury timeline
Antetokounmpo suffered the injury in Milwaukee's Game 4 loss to the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Antetokounmpo jumped to contest an alley-oop between Lou Williams and Clint Capela in the third quarter and landed awkwardly, with his left knee buckling. He remained on the floor for a few minutes in visible pain before being helped to the locker room.
"It just looked like their legs got tangled up," Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer said afterwards. "They both landed awkwardly. That's what I saw live. I haven't seen anything else."
Antetokounmpo returned to the bench, only to go back to the locker room. He was eventually ruled out for the remainder of the game with a hyperextended left knee.
Giannis Antetokounmpo (left knee hyperextension) will not return tonight.- Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) June 30, 2021
Antetokounmpo finished Game 4 with 14 points and eight rebounds in 24 minutes of play.
Giannis Antetokounmpo's injury history
Antetokounmpo appeared in 61 of a possible 72 games during the regular season. The two-time MVP missed six straight games at the start of April because of left knee soreness. The Bucks went 6-5 in the 11 games Antetokounmpo missed.
Antetokounmpo has yet to miss a game in the 2021 NBA Playoffs. Prior to Game 4, he was averaging 29.2 points, 13.0 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game on 54.6 percent shooting from the field in the postseason.
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