Giannis Antetokounmpo may have planted the seeds for the Bucks’ Damian Lillard trade at a Fresno barbershop

The Milwaukee Bucks came out of nowhere on Wednesday to make a shocking offseason splash and acquire seven-time All-Star guard Damian Lillard in a three-team trade with Portland and Phoenix.

The deal obviously has major ramifications in the East with two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo being paired with a true superstar point guard for the first time in his career. And it turned out that Lillard really might have been Giannis’ first choice all along.

In a delightfully random report from TNT’s Chris Haynes, Giannis was asked at a barbershop in Fresno a few months ago — likely in May — which NBA player he’d most like to team up with. And his answer was Lillard. And this is the first we’re hearing of it.

In a Fresno barbershop called Phase II a few months ago, Giannis Antetokounmpo was asked of the one player he would like to play with. His response was Damian Lillard.

— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) September 27, 2023

Why was Giannis in Fresno? Who knows! But what a random twist to this entire trade considering Haynes waited until now to share that story. You know, just in case.

Fast forward to Wednesday, and Giannis really got his wish.

Lillard goes Milwaukee as part of a 3-team deal with Jrue Holiday, Deandre Ayton, Toumani Camara, a 2029 unprotected MIL 1st, and unprotected MIL swap rights in 2028 and 2030 to Blazers. Phoenix lands Jusuf Nurkic, Grayson Allen, Nassir Little and Keon Johnson.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 27, 2023

The feeling was mutual too.

Dame tweeted this last year … he got his wish 👀

(h/t @MrLlyod)

— ESPN (@espn) September 27, 2023

Now, odds are that Giannis’ trip to a Fresno barbershop wasn’t the first time he had told people that he wanted to play alongside Lillard. But what if it was? That could have sparked four months of work to bring the Blazers guard to Milwaukee.

NBA fans also had thoughts on that report.

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