Giannis Antetokounmpo: MVP teaming up with Drake on new merchandise

Jul 20, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 20, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports /

Winning an NBA championship can not only boost the notoriety and fame of an organization but also an individual player, even if they’re already a star. That’s what we’re seeing with the Milwaukee Bucks and Giannis Antetokounmpo this week.

And what a week it’s been for Antetokounmpo in the world of hip hop. Last week, Antetokounmpo got a name drop on Kanye West’s new album Donda. Now, it appears as though another hip-hop superstar is shouting out the reigning Finals MVP, but Antetokounmpo also has a hand in this.

Late Wednesday night, Drake posted a photo on his Instagram story of a shirt that said, “I need a freak” with the Nike swoosh underneath and tagged Antetokounmpo’s Instagram in the post.

Antetokounmpo reposted the story on his and then posted a black screen with the only text reading “Giannis x CLB” and a few emojis.

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Of course, this is all in reference to Drake’s upcoming album, Certified Lover Boy, that releases on Friday, September 3rd. While Antetokounmpo has been referenced in lyrics before, this would be the first time he has collaborated on merch with a rapper or anyone besides Nike for that matter.

It remains to be seen if this will actually be for sale yet or if it’s just a marketing tactic to gain more attention for his upcoming album, but I would be thoroughly surprised if fans weren’t able to buy this shirt when the album comes out later this week.

A Giannis Antetokounmpo and Drake collab is quite surprising given their history

Although it does make sense on the surface that Antetokounmpo and Drake would collab on merch (Giannis just won the championship and Finals MVP, Drake is one of the biggest celebrities on the planet, and they’re both sponsored by Nike), the two certainly have a bit of history.

Going back to the 2019 NBA Playoffs when the Milwaukee Bucks played the Toronto Raptors in the Eastern Conference Finals, Drake was very much a presence at his courtside seats. Whether it was talking trash to Antetokounmpo during games or rubbing Raptors head coach Nick Nurse’s shoulders, he was certainly a thorn in the side of the Bucks and fans during that series.

However, Antetokounmpo seemingly ignored the chirping in the playoff series, but fast forward to February 2020 when the Bucks visited Scotiabank Arena once again; I was at this game! Drake brought two championship belts — a reference to the Bucks’ pregame WWE routine that year — and continued to chirp at Antetokounmpo. The Bucks superstar seemed to have some choice words for Drake this time around.

Antetokounmpo was asked about that after the game and had the perfect response.

So suffice to say it is a little surprising to see the two collaborating on merch together. Drake does have a history of chirping at players that he’s friends with outside of the game, so I’m sure the two superstars ended up putting their differences aside for this. Antetokounmpo even said that Drake wasn’t the most annoying fan to play in front of (although it was still another notable Raptors fan).

Next. Giannis Antetokounmpo: MVP gets fitting mention on Kanye West’s ‘Donda’. dark

If this were prior to Antetokounmpo signing his extension, I’m sure the national media would have a field day with this. But now it’s simply two Nike stars collaborating together.