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Bucks unsure if injured Antetokounmpo will be ready for playoffs opener

Agence France-Presse
Bucks unsure if injured Antetokounmpo will be ready for playoffs opener
Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks is helped off the court by Thanasis Antetokounmpo and Brook Lopez after suffering an injury during the second half of a game against the Boston Celtics at the Fiserv Forum on April 09, 2024 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Stacy Revere / Getty Images / AFP

LOS ANGELES – Milwaukee Bucks coach Doc Rivers said Tuesday (Wednesday Manila time) it's not yet clear if two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo will be available for the team's playoff opener against the Indiana Pacers on Sunday (Monday in Manila).

Amid reports that the Bucks are preparing to open the post-season without their star, Rivers said Antetokounmpo was progressing in his recovery from the calf injury that saw him miss the last three games of the regular season.

"He's doing well," Rivers said. "He's walking around, looks good. I can say (he's) farther than we thought he would be, but just not ready yet."

Rivers declined to speculate on whether Antetokounmpo would be fit by Sunday.

"I'm not going to make a decision," he said. "First of all, I don't make the decision, but our medical team is saying they don't know, so I'm going to wait and see."

In the meantime, Bucks forward Khris Middleton said the team would prepare as if they have to make do without Antetokounmpo to start the series against the Pacers.

"Until we know if he's playing or not, we're going to prepare like he's not playing," Middleton said.

Antetokounmpo wasn't the only Bucks star sitting out practice on Tuesday as All-Star point guard Damian Lillard rested an adductor injury.

Rivers said medical imaging tests hadn't indicated a serious injury but team doctors thought Lillard could use "a little more rest."

"He's still doing conditioning and things like that, but we went live a lot today and we just didn't want him out there doing any of that," Rivers said.

"We want him to be as close to 100 percent as possible — if you can be that at this point."

Bucks forward Bobby Portis tried to damp down concerns that Lillard could also be an absentee as the playoffs commence.

"It's, what, Tuesday? And the game is Sunday," he said. "So that's a long way away."

vuukle comment

BUCKS

GIANNIS ANTETOKOUNMPO

MILWAUKEE

NBA

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