Antetokounmpo is an award-winning Greek basketball player who is a two-time NBA MVP and Defensive Player of the Year. He has been a driving force behind Milwaukee’s run to the NBA Championship this year.
He was born to Nigerian parents in a small suburb of Athens called Sepolia, which is located on the outskirts of Greece’s capital. His family was often evicted and struggled to make ends meet.
The Greek Freak’s Pronunciation
Giannis Antetokounmpo is an emerging NBA superstar who has already become well-known to fans worldwide, thanks to his crazy highlights and catchy nickname, The Greek Freak. But many people are still getting it wrong when trying to pronounce his name.
A lot of announcers are mispronouncing his name, especially on NBA games and highlight shows. That’s why it was so surprising to see an NBA player say his last name correctly for the first time on a live TV show.
Shaquille O’Neal had an awkward exchange with the Milwaukee Bucks star on a live TV show in 2019. In response to Shaq’s mispronunciation of his name, Antetokounmpo laughed and said, “Just call me Superman.” He was right, as everyone at the studio was laughing at the joke.
The Bucks’ star has earned seven All-Star appearances, two MVP awards, one NBA Finals MVP prize and an NBA title with the team. He has also been dubbed the best defender in the NBA and a rising superstar on the court.
But in addition to his impressive athletic ability, the Greek Freak also has a unique language to speak. His name consists of thirteen letters and six vowels, which is hard for many people to pronounce.
His last name is a Yoruba word that is transliterated to Greek, where it becomes an-tet-oh-KOON-poh. Despite the change in spelling, this name is still difficult to pronounce for most people.
The Greek Freak’s First Name
Giannis Antetokounmpo, better known as the Greek Freak, is one of the biggest stars in the NBA. He is currently playing for the Milwaukee Bucks and has recently been named NBA MVP. His size, speed and ball-handling abilities make him a difficult matchup for defenders.
He has a unique name that many people have trouble pronouncing. But it really isn’t as hard as it sounds. In fact, ESPN’s Ryan Ruocco has a pretty good handle on how to pronounce the Greek Freak’s name.
When he was young, the Greek Freak lived in poverty with his family in Athens. They were stateless, so they didn’t have a home and had to sell items on the streets to survive.
They were helped by a local basketball coach, Spiros Velliniatis, who encouraged them to play basketball. The coach emphasized that basketball was their ticket to both security and a new life in Greece.
The coach also arranged for Giannis and his brother Thanasis to get their Greek passports, which allowed them to travel and pursue their dream of playing in the NBA. This was a huge shift from their ostracized beginnings in Nigeria.
Now, the Greek Freak is a household name and has even earned his own signature shoe from Nike. And the Greek people are going crazy over him.
He has won six All-Star Game appearances and received the Most Improved Player award in 2017 when he was just 22 years old. He is now considered one of the best players in the NBA, averaging 27.7 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game.
In addition to his great play, the Greek Freak is also a wonderful father and husband. He recently welcomed his first child, Liam, and plans to spend time with him while the NBA is on hiatus.
The Greek Freak’s Middle Name
The middle sibling of five brothers, Giannis Antetokounmpo has been a star of the Milwaukee Bucks since he was drafted with the 15th overall pick in 2013. In just a few short years, he has gone from being a minor player to one of the most dominant players in the NBA.
He was born in Greece to Nigerian parents and was raised there, though he was not officially recognized as a Greek citizen. That meant the family lived without a permanent address and were often evicted from their apartments, as well as being treated with xenophobic prejudice.
Eventually, they were able to apply for citizenship in Greece and Giannis and his older brother Thanasis received their papers. It was a big deal for the family, and it was a huge boost in their self-esteem to finally be accepted as Greeks.
In the meantime, their mother Veronica was taking care of their younger siblings and helping their father with his work, while their brother Thanasis was helping his father build a business. But they also spent a lot of time playing basketball with Filathlitikos, the club where they first started playing.
When he was just 11, Giannis played his first game for Filathlitikos, which led to him being drafted in the 2013 NBA Draft with the 15th overall pick. His breakout season a few years later drew national attention and he was named the league’s most valuable player that year.
The Greek Freak’s Last Name
Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Milwaukee Bucks star, has one of the most complicated last names in basketball. His name is a combination of Greek and Nigerian roots, and it’s an issue that many people are still trying to sort out.
Born to a Nigerian mother and a Greek father, Antetokounmpo was raised in Greece but spent most of his childhood at home with his family. He and his brothers were able to learn the Greek language and go to school, but their parents spoke to them in their native Igbo language, according to Quartz Africa.
As a teenager, he began to play basketball for Filathlitikos, a local club in Greece. He was drafted by the Bucks in 2013 and began to develop as a professional player. He eventually gained Greek citizenship, which allowed him to travel outside of the country and do workouts with NBA teams.
He was named the Bucks’ rookie of the year in 2015, and in 2017 he became the first player to lead his team in all five major statistical categories (total points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks). In that same season he also made his first All-Star appearance and was named the NBA’s Most Improved Player.
After his debut in the NBA, Antetokounmpo became known as the “Greek Freak” for his freakish athletic abilities and ballhandling skills. The nickname has grown in popularity, and he says he’s proud of it.
But he has also had to deal with a lot of cultural differences, including the way his name is pronounced and spelled in different countries. His first name is a combination of both Greek and Nigerian roots, and his last name is spelled differently in his passport than on his jersey.