The Happiest Moment of His Life
A child of Nigerian immigrants, Giannis Antetokounmpo grew up poor in Greece. His family often sold watches and purses on the street just to feed themselves and pay their rent.
Sitting alongside his brother during the 2013 NBA Draft, the 18-year-old was selected as the No. 15 pick by the Milwaukee Bucks and described to NBA.com that getting drafted was the happiest moment of his family's life.
"When I think in the past, make me sad. We struggled a lot in the past to have a better life and now I get drafted in the NBA, for sure we're going to have a better life. And I think now my mother and father at home, they will be very happy to see me drafted because four years in sadness and poverty is very difficult. Maybe after four years, maybe today it's the happiest day of their life to see me drafted."
The 6'9 forward played in one of Greece's lower-tier basketball leagues before several NBA scouts and GMs got word of him this past season and traveled to the country to watch him play. Many scouts have recommended the 18-year-old should wait a few years to develop his game before playing in the NBA, but Adetokunbo said he is ready.
"I think for sure I will stay in the NBA, the Milwaukee Bucks," he said.
He added it still feels like yesterday his family was getting evicted from an apartment in Greece after being unable to afford the roughly $400 monthly rent. Now he is getting ready to play in the NBA.
"I still don't believe this is happening. I can't describe how I excited I feel to get drafted in the first round by the Milwaukee Bucks. It's a dream come true."