Giannis Antetokounmpo, the star of the Milwaukee Bucks and NBA MVP contender, pulled out of the team victory over the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night after he headed in against an opponent.
Antetokounmpo and Wizards player Moe Wagner started talking trash to each other after the Bucks were challenging a call. Antetokounmpo approached Wagner and nodded. The league’s best player was thrown out of the game in the second quarter.
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After the match, Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said the tension had dropped between the two teams throughout the match.
“This is nothing new,”; Budenholzer said. “Giannis has been dealing with this for a long time. He is the MVP. He is normally phenomenal and today was a slide. In some ways, it could be one of the best things that happened today as a learning moment. We will all remember that we need to keep calm – the players and the coaches. “
The Bucks’ Sterling Brown said Antetokounmpo was “saturated”.
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“There were a lot of dirty free throws coming his way. And he reacted. … (But) he gets a lot of free throws and rubbish games coming his way,” Brown said.
Wizards coach Scott Brooks said there is no “place for him” in the league despite his respect for “The Greak Greak”.
“It was a very strange few seconds,” Brooks said. “Moe went inside and got a charge. That’s what you have to do. You have to abandon him and force him to shoot and if he gets up to rise and get a charge. A few seconds later, he got a head kick. “
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The Bucks won the match, 126-113.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.