Knicks great Charles Oakley says Giannis Antetokounmpo would ‘come off the bench’ during his era

on Feb27
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Former New York Knicks great Charles Oakley is a fan of superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo, especially after Antetokounmpo led the Milwaukee Bucks to their first NBA championship last year. But Oakley doesn’t believe the two-time league MVP would have been good enough to start on a team during Oakley’s era.

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The Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo tries to get past the Los Angeles Lakers' Anthony Davis during the second half of a game Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021, in Milwaukee. 

The Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo tries to get past the Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis during the second half of a game Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021, in Milwaukee. 
(AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Oakley, who made an appearance on SLAM magazine’s “No Pump Fakes” podcast earlier this month, said that Antetokounmpo would have struggled because he doesn’t have dominant post moves.

“He’s doing his thing. I was skeptical because he couldn’t make a jump shot (or) free throw. After what he did last year, he done won me over,” Oakley explained. “He wouldn’t have been a force back in the day … He would have struggled. They would make him shoot jump shots. He wouldn’t be doing a euro step to the basket. Somebody gonna knock his head off.”

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Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) runs up the court during the first half of a preseason game against the Utah Jazz Oct. 13, 2021, in Salt Lake City.

Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) runs up the court during the first half of a preseason game against the Utah Jazz Oct. 13, 2021, in Salt Lake City.
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

“He’d come off the bench back in the day,” Oakley added.

Podcast host Ahmad Smith responded, wondering, “Two-time MVP coming off the bench? Giannis? He’s 6-10, 280 (pounds), he can run like a gazelle.”

“He ain’t no 280, he’s about 260, 250,” Oakley replied. Antetokounmpo is listed at 6-11 and 242 pounds on the Bucks’ roster.

Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo reacts after dunking during the first half of Game 5 of a second-round playoff series June 15, 2021, in New York.

Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo reacts after dunking during the first half of Game 5 of a second-round playoff series June 15, 2021, in New York.
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

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Oakley, who was selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers with the ninth pick in the 1985 NBA Draft, was traded to the Chicago Bulls and played alongside legend Michael Jordan. In 1988, Oakley was traded to the Knicks and was a part of the team that made it to the 1994 NBA Finals. Oakley played alongside Patrick Ewing, John Starks, Anthony Mason, and Mark Jackson.





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