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Giannis Antetokounmpo is unstoppable — even with a banged up knee and an upcoming game most superstars would sit for. It's mere hours until the long-awaited All-Star break, but against the lackluster Bulls, Giannis, who's averaging 32 points and 12 rebounds is still ready to play. He has a 12-game winning streak to maintain.
The (finally) healthy Bucks have climbed to the top of the Eastern Conference standings and are a game back of the Celtics for the No. 1 overall seed. Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday have combined to miss 51 games this season, yet Giannis has donned his Superman cape to keep Milwaukee in the race.
He's not only singlehandedly kept the Bucks afloat, but kept them in contention to have home court advantage throughout the playoffs. He's a locomotive with no signs of slowing down, and exactly what this team needs.
In the 11 games Giannis missed, Milwaukee has won six — none against a team with a winning record. This unit will go as far as he will take them and that might be the best argument for his chances at winning the award.
He has worthy competition in Nikola Jokic at -250 odds (bet $25 to win $10) and Joel Embiid +600 (bet $10 to win $60), but Giannis at +700 has a lot of season left to make up the difference — and he won't waste a moment.
Heading into the final game before the All-Star break on the road against a Bulls team that has lost five in a row is an opportunity others would take to coast into the mini-vacation.
Coasting isn't in Giannis' DNA.