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NBA

Will Giannis Antetokounmpo play on Christmas Day?

Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo has cleared the NBA’s health and safety protocols and has been activated from the covid-reserve list.

Update:
Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo has cleared the NBA’s health and safety protocols and activated from the covid-reserve list.
Paul RutherfordUSA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo has cleared the NBA’s health and safety protocols, and may be able to play for their game against the Boston Celtics on Christmas Day.

The 27-year-old is set to train on-court on Friday, and the decision to let him play on Saturday will be made depending on how his training turns out.

Long absence

The two-time MVP entered the protocols on Dec. 14, a day after their game, also against the Celtics. He has skipped the last five games of the Bucks.

The team would want Antetokounmpo to join them as soon as possible, but will not rush him if he is not totally prepared to do so. He has not been able to train for almost two weeks.

According to his teammate Khris Middleton- who has also undergone covid protocols- it has not been easy for Antetokounmpo to be away from the team, and is raring to be back in the thick of the action.

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Eager to play

“I talked to him a couple of times. I think he’s definitely feeling it from what I gathered or heard when I talked to him. But you know he lives and breathes basketball, I think we all know that,” Middleton said.

“So I think it is an understatement to say that he misses being out here… when he’s not playing on the bench he’s standing up the whole time. I know he’s itching to get back, so hopefully we see him here soon.”

Given Antetokounmpo’s determination, he may end up pushing to play on Christmas. The five-time NBA All-Star has averaged 27 points, 11.6 rebounds, and 5.8 assists per game this season.

The Bucks and Celtics face off on Christmas Day at 2:30 p.m. ET.

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