Giannis Antetokounmpo reveals he almost walked away from the NBA

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MARCH 01 (Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MARCH 01 (Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images) /

There’s always been something about Giannis Antetokounmpo’s interviews that are must-see, must-read, or must-watch whenever they come out.

The 28-year-old tends to offer unique perspectives on life and is never afraid to crack a few jokes here and there. At times, Antetokounmpo is also not afraid to be vulnerable, which some find rare in sports sometimes. In his latest interview with the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel’s Lori Nickel, he went in depth with a topic he is very passionate about, which is mental health. In that interview, Giannis revealed that he almost walked away from the game and had conversations about it with the front office in 2020 due to his mental health.

Giannis Antetokounmpo reveals he almost walked away from the NBA

This is undeniably a shocking reveal from the two-time MVP, and it would have been even more of a surprise had he walked away from the game. Yet, at that time, Antetokounmpo was undoubtedly going through a lot. He was still dealing with the loss of his father from years prior, the Bucks had just been isolated away from their loved ones in the Orlando bubble, where they had been booted out of the postseason early yet again, the nation was undergoing social justice protests, and there was a global pandemic. Despite signing the largest deal in NBA history, Antetokounmpo said he was willing to let it all go at the time.

Antetokounmpo reveals that he started seeing a counselor, which helped him mightily at a time he was dealing with significant stress. He has since patterned with Antidote Health, which is used to assist individuals and families seeking mental health care. The former Finals MVP winner plans to continue helping those who are dealing with mental health battles of their own moving forward, which is certainly a noble cause.

The NBA would be in a completely different state today had Giannis Antetokounmpo retired from the game in 2020. Less than a year later, Antetokounmpo led the Bucks to their first NBA title in 50 years and fulfilled his promise to deliver a championship to the city of Milwaukee.

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