Nigerian Player Becomes Seventh Player in History to Score 50 Points in an NBA Finals Game
Giannis Sina Ugo Antetokounmpo made an incredible recovery from a hyperextended knee in the Conference Finals against Atlanta Hawks to dominate the NBA Finals.
The 2021 NA Finals were all about The Greek Freak with several iconic moments.
He wasn’t 100% for Game 1 in Pheonix but still managed 20 points, but from Game 2, there was no stopping him.
He dropped more than 40 points in Games 2 and 3, made an all-time game-saving block at the rim in Game 4.
In Game 5, he made an all-time game-winning alley-oop dunk and then Game 6.
Giannis made another great defensive block from the first play and made it to the rim to score his first points. He made several blocks in that game.
To seal his greatness, the 26-year-old dropped 50 points to win the title for Bucks.
He is the second player in NBA history to record three games of 40 plus points and 10 plus rebounds in an NBA Finals series, joining Shaquille O’Neal, who did it in 2000.
He is also the seventh player in history to score 50 points in an NBA Finals game.
Giannis was named the Finals MVP to join Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon as the only players in NBA history to win a regular-season MVP Award, a Finals MVP Award and a Defensive Player of the Year Award.
In his post-game press conference, the Nigerian basketballer dedicated his feat to Nigeria.
“I represent my both countries Nigeria and Greece, a lot of kids from there, this should make every person, every kid to believe in their dreams,” he said.
Giannis was born and raised in Athens to Nigerian parents Charles and Veronica Detokunbo, who moved to the European country from Lagos in 1993.
The now NBA champion hugely identifies with his Nigerian roots and in 2015 got his Nigerian passport.
“They call me ‘The Greek Freak’ and a lot of people support me and all that [in Greece]. A lot of people don’t know that I love my Nigerian side,” the Milwaukee Bucks star told The Undefeated.
“The minute I go back home and walk in — my mom is Nigerian, I don’t have Greek in my house, so a lot of Nigerian people reaching out to me — was amazing. It made me feel welcome, so that was nice.”
“My parents are Nigerian. When I go back home, it’s Nigerian. Nigeria is in my blood,” he also said.
Giannis understands little Igbo, the language of the Igbo tribe in Nigeria where his mother comes from. His dad Charles who died in 2017 was from the Yoruba tribe in Nigeria.
Antetokounmpo has never been to Nigeria but has been planning a trip to his parents’ country.
“I want to see where my family comes from, where my mom was raised, see my family, see where my dad was raised,” he once told The Undefeated.
He is also planning to shoot a documentary after his homecoming when it happens.