NBA

Philadelphia 76ers awaiting news on Simmons knee injury

By Sports Desk August 06, 2020

The Philadelphia 76ers are waiting to discover the extent of a knee injury Ben Simmons suffered in a 107-98 NBA victory over the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.

Simmons left the court in the third quarter, having appeared to tweak his knee after taking a rebound.

The two-time All-Star limped to the locker room and was unable to return.

Philadelphia coach Brett Brown was unsure over how much damage the Australian point guard has done after the game.

"We don't know," Brown said. "I'm sure the club will make some announcement.

"But as far as knowing more than that, I don't. Obviously I'm very curious."

The 76ers are back in action against the Orlando Magic on Friday.

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  • Giannis: Don't call me MVP until I'm an NBA champion Giannis: Don't call me MVP until I'm an NBA champion

    Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo does not want to be called a two-time MVP until he wins an NBA championship.

    Antetokounmpo was crowned the Most Valuable Player for the second straight year after leading the Bucks to the top seed in the Eastern Conference and the league's best record (56-17) before losing in the semi-finals at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

    The 25-year-old, who averaged 29.5 points, 13.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game during the regular season – became the first player to claim MVP honours in successive seasons since Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry in 2015 and 2016.

    After winning his first MVP award last year, Antetokounmpo said: "Please, after this day don't call me MVP until I win it again next year."

    But with back-to-back MVPs in 2019-20 after receiving 85 of the 101 first-place votes, Antetokounmpo – whose Bucks lost 4-1 to the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference semi-finals – told TNT on Friday: "Don't call me MVP until I'm a champion."

    Having also been named Defensive Player of the Year, Antetokounmpo is just the third player in league history to win that award and the MVP in the same season, that select list also featuring Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon.

    "Obviously, I'm happy for tonight and I'm happy for this award, but I always look forward," Antetokounmpo said. "I always try to figure out, how can I get better? How can I do it again? How can I do it for multiple years to come? How can I be a champion? I'm happy. I'm grateful, but how can I do it again?"

    Milwaukee's failure in the postseason ramped up speculation around Antetokounmpo's future amid talk he could demand a trade.

    Antetokounmpo is set to become a free agent at the end of the 2020-21 season, while he is eligible for a max contract extension worth around $254million this offseason.

    "As long as everybody's fighting for the same thing ... which is to be a champion, I don't see why not to be in Milwaukee for the next 15 years," Antetokounmpo told NBA TV.

    Antetokounmpo reportedly met with the Bucks last week in Milwaukee and he added: "Obviously, I would like to keep that conversation I had with the ownership and my coach and the general manager private, but at the end of the day, every team has got to improve.

    "It's simple. You've got to be better than what you were last year. If you did not win the whole thing, you've got to get better. If you win the whole thing, you've got to get better and do it again. So, for now, our team has got to get better. I think we have great talent and as long as we improve individually and improve as a team we're gonna be in a good spot.

    "I left the meeting encouraged and was happy with what we discussed and for now, we're on the same page. I was happy that they came and we had this long conversation about how we're gonna get better and about things for the future, but, as I said, I was happy.

    "I left the conversation encouraged, but I've been encouraged my whole career in Milwaukee. I know that we've gotten better each year and I know that Milwaukee has great people that view every year the same I do every year, which is to play well, improve and win it all. So, I've always been encouraged, but after the meeting I was encouraged, too."

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo's NBA MVP-winning season by the STATS numbers Giannis Antetokounmpo's NBA MVP-winning season by the STATS numbers

    Another season, another Most Valuable Player award for Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo.

    Antetokounmpo was crowned the NBA's MVP for the second straight year after leading the Bucks to the top seed in the Eastern Conference and the league's best record (56-17) before losing in the semi-finals at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

    The "Greek Freak" – who averaged 29.5 points, 13.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game during the regular season – is the first player to claim MVP honours in successive seasons since Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry in 2015 and 2016.

    After capping another dominant individual season, we look at Antetokounmpo's campaign using STATS data.

     

    - Antetokounmpo is the only player that ranked in the top five in scoring and rebounding this season among qualifying players. The last player to do it on the team with the most wins in the NBA that season was Los Angeles Lakers great Shaquille O'Neal in 1999-00.

    - Of all players to rank in the top five of both points per game and rebounds per game, Antetokounmpo was doing it averaging the fewest minutes per game (30.4). For context, Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid ranked in the top five last season with 33.7 minutes per game.

    Antetokounmpo led the Bucks in points per game, total rebounds per game and assists per game in 2019-20. For comparison, Denver Nuggets All-Star led his team with 19.9ppg, 9.7rpg and 7.0apg.

    - Antetokounmpo also did this last season and also in 2016-17. If not for team-mate Eric Bledsoe barely beating him out in assists per game in 2017-18, Antetokounmpo would have led Milwaukee in these categories for a fourth consecutive season.

    - There have been 15 instances in which a player has averaged 25.0-plus points per game, 10.0-plus rebounds per game and 5.0-plus assists per game in a season. Antetokounmpo has two of these instances, this season and last term. The 25-year-old joins Russell Westbrook, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain and Oscar Robertson as the only players to average these numbers in multiple seasons.

    - Not since Abdul-Jabbar in 1972-73 (30.2ppg, 16.1rbg and 5.0apg) has a player enjoyed a season with 29.0-plus points per game, 13.0-plus rebounds per game and 5.0-plus assists per game. Chamberlain achieved the feat twice in 1963-64 (36.9ppg, 22.3rbg and 5.0apg) and 1965-66 (33.5ppg, 24.6rbg and 5.2apg), while Elgin Baylor had averages of 34.8ppg, 19.8rbg and 5.1apg in 1960-61.

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo wins second successive NBA MVP award Giannis Antetokounmpo wins second successive NBA MVP award

    Giannis Antetokounmpo has been named the NBA's Most Valuable Player for a second successive season.

    Antetokounmpo won the award once again after leading the Milwaukee Bucks to the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

    Their 56-17 record was the best in the NBA in a season impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Antetokounmpo averaged 29.5 points, 13.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game in the regular season.

    He becomes the first player to claim the MVP in successive seasons since Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors in 2015 and 2016.

    Having also been named Defensive Player of the Year, Antetokounmpo is just the third player in league history to win that award and the MVP in the same season, that select list also featuring Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon.

    Antetokounmpo could not guide the Bucks to their first NBA title since 1971, however, Milwaukee coming up short in the Conference semifinals.

    The Bucks were beaten 4-1 in that series by the Miami Heat, with Antetokounmpo missing the final game due to an ankle injury sustained in Game 4.

    Milwaukee's failure in the postseason ramped up speculation around Antetokounmpo's future amid talk he could demand a trade.

    He is set to become a free agent at the end of the 2020-21 season, while he is eligible for a max contract extension worth around $254million this offseason.

    Antetokounmpo dismissed speculation of a trade, however, telling Yahoo Sports: "It's not happening. That's not happening.

    "Some see a wall and go in [another direction]. I plough through it. We just have to get better as a team, individually and get right back at it next season."

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