After Greece’s World Cup Ouster, Antetokounmpo Has God’s Plan

Greece's Giannis Antetokounmpo tries to get past United States' Harrison Barnes during phase two of the FIBA Basketball World Cup at the Shenzhen Bay Sports Center in Shenzhen in southern China's Guangdong province on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019. AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Milwaukee Bucks star and NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo played like he wasn’t there at times and uncharacteristically turned sour and wouldn’t talk to reporters after Greece didn’t advance at the World Basketball Tourney in China.

A couple of days later he instead released a video of himself in his first public reaction to the disappointing ouster. It showed him wearing the national team’s uniform, said EuroHoops, with the caption: “Blessings show up in many different forms.. Don’t ever second guess Gods plan.”

He didn’t say what God had in store for him or Greece after it tumbled and missed automatic qualification for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, now having to fight its way in.

Maybe it was the occasional uninspired play that failed to see him dominate international teams but fouling out late in a game against the Czech Republic that Greece won by seven – but needed to win by 12.

“You cannot call these kinds of fouls on this kind of player,” said Greece coach Thanasis Skourtopoulos. “I am sorry because we disappointed a lot of fans in Greece and fans who supported us here,” he said.