NBA Rumors: Giannis Antetokounmpo trending to miss start of NBA Playoffs?

It's beginning to look as if Giannis Antetokounmpo isn't going to be ready by the start of the NBA Playoffs.
New York Knicks v Milwaukee Bucks
New York Knicks v Milwaukee Bucks / Patrick McDermott/GettyImages

NBA Rumors: The way things are currently trending, Giannis Antetokounmpo isn't expected to be in the lineup for the Milwaukee Bucks as they begin their NBA Playoff run.

It's been a far-from-ideal journey for the Milwaukee Bucks throughout the 2023-24 NBA season. In what was supposed to be an electrifying season for the Bucks after making the surprise acquisition of Damian Lillard last summer, this year has left much more to be desired by the team than what was initially expected. Nevertheless, especially for the Bucks, this is a team that will be able to change the narrative of the year with a strong playoff showing.

Unfortunately for the Bucks, it's looking more and more as if the start of their playoff run is going to have to come without Giannis Antetokounmpo.

After going down with a calf injury in one of the final few games of the regular season, there remains much mystery about his potential recovery ahead of the start of the NBA Playoffs. Even though there's still a few days before the Bucks' Game 1 against the Indiana Pacers, Giannis is reportedly trending toward sitting out the start of the team's first-round playoff series.

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, Giannis' status is "very much up in the air" for Game 1 against the Pacers.

With no need to rush him back for Game 1, I'd be shocked if Giannis started and played for the Bucks this weekend.

The Milwaukee Bucks don't need to rush Giannis Antetokounmpo back from injury

Even though the Bucks will be facing off against a dangerous Indiana Pacers team, there's no point in rushing back Giannis this early in the NBA Playoffs. That's the biggest reason why I ultimately believe Milwaukee is going to take a patient approach when it comes to Giannis' recovery.

The Bucks are hoping they are about to embark on a long playoff journey. The last thing they need to do is rush Giannis back for Game 1 in the first round. The smart play, and probably the most likely outcome, involves the Bucks sitting Giannis for Game 1. Even if he's close, the Bucks could elect to see how the team looks without him against the Pacers early on.

Depending on how Game 1 goes and how Giannis continues to recover, the Bucks could then make an evaluation for Game 2. But, at least for now, it makes absolutely no sense for Milwaukee to rush Giannis back.

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