ATHENS (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo is dreaming big. He wants to beat the United States wearing Greek team colors.
“I’ll be the next one to beat them. I’ll be waiting for them somewhere,” the Milwaukee Bucks star said before leading a team in an exhibition game involving Greek and foreign players before 15,000 fans at the Athens Olympic Arena on Sunday.
Antetokounmpo made his boast in front of three retired veterans of the Greek national team that was the last to beat the U.S., in a 101-95 upset in the semifinals of the 2006 World Championships.
On Sunday, the 2005-06 Greece team — European champions in 2005 and runners-up to Spain at the 2006 Worlds — played a side which included brothers Giannis and Thanassis Antetokounmpo, and American Euroleague star Kyle Hines. The Greek veterans, mostly in their late 30s and early 40s, prevailed 92-91 thanks to better shooting and plenty more steals, with the crowd rewarded with some spectacular dunks from the Antetokounmpo brothers.
The New York Knicks’ Kristaps Porzingis took part in the event last year, which was held in an open-air court in Athens’ biggest high school. This is the fourth year the brothers are holding this event.
DEMETRIS NELLAS, Associated Press