The Milwaukee Bucks rose to the top of the NBA food chain, at least for now, when they shipped off Jrue Holiday and Grayson Allen to land star guard Damian Lillard, who had asked the Portland Trail Blazers to trade him early in the offseason.
Lillard had wanted to go to the Miami Heat, but he likely finds himself in an ever better situation now in Milwaukee, as he will team up with Giannis Antetokounmpo, a two-time regular-season MVP.
Antetokounmpo had a simple statement about his pairing his Lillard, via the Bucks on Twitter.
"I need Dame to be Dame, and he needs me to be me." 🦌 pic.twitter.com/YGVawJ4rNM
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) October 2, 2023
Outside of Nikola Jokic, who just led the Denver Nuggets to the NBA championship a few months ago, Antetokounmpo is widely considered the best basketball player in the world.
The one advantage he has over Jokic is his defense — he is a former Defensive Player of the Year winner and can protect the rim as well as guard players in space at a high level.
With Lillard on board, Antetokounmpo won’t have to carry the Bucks as much, and it can help him reduce his wear and tear as he starts to approach his 30th birthday.
Lillard averaged a career-high 32.2 points a game last season, and imagining him and the Greek Freak on the offensive end has to be sending tingles through the spines of Bucks fans.
The two will also have Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez, Bobby Portis, and Pat Connaughton, among others, to provide support throughout the season.
Lillard and Antetokounmpo may now be the best star duo in the NBA, but it is safe to say the only accolade the two are seriously interested in is winning the world championship.NEXT: Damian Lillard Reacts To His Pairing With Giannis Antetokounmpo