MILWAUKEE, WI – NBA superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo was featured in Chicago Eater (CE) for his latest venture, partnering with the Chicago-based Avli restaurant chain to open a new branch of the Greek eatery in Milwaukee.
“In August 2022, NBA superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo, the charismatic Greek national who brought the Milwaukee Bucks a championship in 2021, fielded a question about perhaps switching teams and playing for the Chicago Bulls,” CE reported.
“I think anybody you ask that question that plays basketball if he said no, he would be a liar,” Antetokounmpo told media at the press conference, CE reported. “It’s [the Bulls] a team that won multiple championships. It’s a team that one of the greatest players — if not the greatest player — to ever play this game played for. So it’s a no-brainer. Everybody would love to play for Chicago.”
“The reporter who asked him that loaded question, meant to send shivers down the spines of Milwaukee fans while giving Chicago fans a rare dose of hope, was Lou Canellis,” CE reported, noting that Greek-American Canellis “is a veteran Chicago sports broadcaster who covered the Bulls during the ’90s when they won six titles thanks to Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen.”
“He also happens to be co-owner of Avli, a Greek restaurant chain located in Lincoln Park, River North, and Lake Shore East,” CE reported, adding that “the first opened in 2009 in suburban Winnetka.”
“Restaurant chef Louie Alexakis is passionate about presenting Greek food in a modern setting,” CE reported, noting that “for him, Greek cuisine about more than gyros — at Avli the signature dish is Kataifi prawns with shredded filo and spicy aioli.” Antetokounmpo “is a regular customer at the Chicago locations of Avli when the Bucks are visiting the United Center,” CE reported, adding that “when Canellis and Alexakis announced the opening of a new Avli in Milwaukee, unsurprisingly the player known as ‘Greek Freak’ was part of the action — this time as a part-owner in the restaurant that debuted this week [September 20] in Milwaukee’s Brewer’s Hill neighborhood.”
“The Avli Milwaukee team is thrilled and proud to confirm that the group has been working with Giannis Antetokounmpo and his agents Alex Saratsis and Giorgos Panou on this restaurant, which resulted in Giannis, Alex, and Giorgos all becoming partners in Avli’s Milwaukee restaurant,” a statement from Avli read, CE reported. “Everyone is excited to be a part of the neighborhood and welcome guests in for delicious Greek food, a lively atmosphere, and warm hospitality.”
“Antetokounmpo, who could be a free agent in 2025, [has a] passion for foods from all over the world and in the past has drawn attention for celebrating a 2021 Bucks championship win with 50 pieces of chicken from a Chick-fil-A drive-thru,” CE reported, pointing out that “the antics inspired former Chicago Sky star Candace Parker to make a championship drive-thru order of her own at Portillo’s in 2021 after taking the WNBA title.”
“Like Jordan, whose name graces a line of restaurants, Antetokounmpo joins a club of NBA players, past and present — like LeBron James with Blaze Pizza and Shaquille O’Neal with Big Chicken — who are investors in restaurants,” CE reported.