Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo avoids serious wrist injury, will return when swelling subsides: Sources

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Feb 10, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA;   Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) reacts to the crowd after a basket in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Clippers at Crypto.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo underwent further testing that revealed he did not suffer any serious damage to his right wrist, league sources told The Athletic on Monday. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Antetokounmpo sprained his wrist midway through the Bucks’ 112-100 win over the Chicago Bulls on Thursday. He did not play the remainder of the game.
  • His return will be based on when swelling subsides, according to league sources.
  • The 28-year-old is averaging 31.8 points and 12.2 rebounds per game this season for Milwaukee (41-17), which sits in second place in the Eastern Conference behind the Celtics (42-17).


Antetokounmpo suffered the injury with 10:55 remaining in the second quarter of the game against Chicago after attempting to block a shot at the basket.

As a captain in the NBA All-Star Game on Sunday, Antetokounmpo took the court with his right wrist and thumb wrapped. He scored the first basket, committed a foul with 11:40 left and was done for the night. His team went on to defeat Team LeBron 185-174. 

What this means for the Eastern Conference

With a 12-game win streak before the All-Star break, the Bucks are currently in second place in the Eastern Conference at 41-17, just half a game back of the Boston Celtics, with 24 games left on their schedule. Avoiding a lengthy absence for Antetokounmpo should allow them to remain in what is shaping up to be a tight race at the top of the Eastern Conference and hold off the third-place 76ers, who are 2.5 games back of the Bucks, and fourth-place Cavaliers, who are 4.5 games behind the Bucks. — Nehm

What it means for the Bucks

Antetokounmpo is once again in the middle of a tight NBA MVP race. Averaging a career-high 31.8 points and 12.2 rebounds per game, he means everything to the Bucks and plays a major role in everything they do on offense and defense.

The Bucks have struggled with injuries throughout this season, but Antetokounmpo’s massive two-way effort has helped keep Milawukee near the top of the standings. The Bucks’ two-time NBA MVP was playing his best basketball of the season before suffering his injury against the Bulls last Thursday, averaging 37.2 points, 13.4 rebounds and 5.8 assists per game in the 11 previous games. Keeping Antetokounmpo off the injury report for an extended period will be a massive boost for the Bucks in the final 24 games of the season. — Nehm

Required reading

  • NBA All-Star takeaways: On Giannis’ health, load management, Mitchell’s moment and a happy Kevin Durant
  • Bucks push winning streak to 12, but injuries cast shadow entering All-Star break
  • NBA Power Rankings: Sixers make jump to contenders tier; Nuggets rise; Team-by-team quarter analysis

(Photo: Jayne Kamin-Oncea / USA Today)

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