On Wednesday night, Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks — the #1 overall seed in both the Eastern Conference and the NBA overall — were knocked out of the playoffs by the #8 seed Miami Heat. The Bucks ultimately lost the series 4-1.
Following the game, All-Star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo was asked whether or not he considered this season to be a failure. The query obviously struck a chord with Giannis, who responded to the reporter by not only using his first name in a manner that a teacher would when reprimanding a student but by flipping the question on him and also mentioning Michael Jordan.
“Oh my god. You asked me the same question last year, Eric, okay,” Giannis began.
“Do you get a promotion every year at your job? So every year you work is a failure? Yes or no? No. Every year you work, you work towards something, towards a goal.”
“It’s not a failure; it’s steps to success,” Antetokounmpo said. “There’s always steps to it. Michael Jordan played 15 years, won six championships. The other nine years was a failure? That’s what you’re telling me?
Giannis’ comments have left NBA fans split, however, with some believing it displays an excellent perspective on what defines success, while others think that losing in the first round when you’re the prohibitive favorite can only be viewed as a failure.
Giannis is outstanding: “There’s no failure in sports. There’s good days, bad days, some days you are able to be successful, some days you are not, some days it is your turn, some days it’s not. That’s what sports is about. You don’t always win.” pic.twitter.com/aTnFpnGtdx
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 27, 2023
I like Giannis but imagine if Lebron said this. Of course the season was a failure. It was an unmitigated disaster. Not even a debate. Just cause you speak passionately and heart felt doesn't make it right. Undisputed choke and failure for Bucks pic.twitter.com/KHRwWQ2N7o
— Dave Portnoy (@stoolpresidente) April 27, 2023
Bruh Giannis is VEXED pic.twitter.com/HlSnZgsZWk
— Ahmed/The Ears/IG: BigBizTheGod 🇸🇴 (@big_business_) April 27, 2023
🏀👏 Not football related: but this is a great answer from Giannis Antetokounmpo in regards to perspective in sport. pic.twitter.com/crC6KrVOFa
— EuroFoot (@eurofootcom) April 27, 2023
Really can’t believe I woke up to the media and TL eating that Giannis response up. “There is no failure in sports” is a lie. Every season you don’t win isn’t a failure for sure. A season where you have the best record in the league and lose to the 8-seed in 5(!!!!!) games is.
— 500 🏎 (@Kameron_Hay) April 27, 2023
Regardless of whether or not you think the Bucks’ 2022-23 season is a failure, it’s definitely a disappointment, as they became just the fourth #1 seed in the history of the NBA to lose to a #8 seed in the first round of the playoffs.
As a result of their series win over Giannis and the rest of the Bucks, Jimmy Butler and Miami Heat will be taking on the upstart New York Knicks — who also upset a higher-seeded team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, in the first round.