Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo celebrated his 23rd birthday Wednesday with 25 points, 10 rebounds, four assists, two blocks and a steal in a 104-100 victory over the Detroit Pistons.
While Giannis is just beginning to enter the prime of his career, he's also made some history before turning 23. The Greek Freak joined just Tracy McGrady and LeBron James as one of three players in NBA history recording at least 5,000 points, 2,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists before turning 23, per NBA.com/Stats.
Prior to his birthday Wednesday, Giannis owned 5,364 points, 2,407 rebounds and 1,230 assists. While each is a solid output in its own right, his numbers on a per-game basis have increased dramatically across the board in the past couple of seasons.
Giannis' playing time the first couple of seasons was somewhat limited as he continued to build strength and stamina, having entered the NBA at only 18 years of age. He finally settled into the 35-minute range in 2015-16, but his breakout season came just last year.
In his age-22 season, Giannis averaged 22.9 points, 8.8 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 1.9 blocks and 1.6 steals, proving to be a mammoth contributor at both ends of the floor. His performance last season also earned him numerous accolades. Not only did he make his first All-Star start, but he was also named the 2016-17 Most Improved Player and earned NBA All-Defensive team and All-NBA Team honors.
Giannis has improved on those numbers further this season, placing him among the favorites for NBA MVP honors, per Sports Illustrated. Should the Bucks heat back up and make a climb up the Eastern Conference standings, his name could push further into consideration.
He returns to the floor with an opportunity to better his resume Friday evening against a 7-18 Dallas Mavericks club.