The 2019 Most Valuable Player in the NBA is Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo. Popularly referred to as the “Greek Freak,” Antetokounmpo received 78 of the 101 possible first-place votes.
He was born in Greece in 1994, to Nigerian immigrants. In his speech, Antetokounmpo thanked Greece, Nigerian, and the city of Milwaukee for always supporting him.
He paid a moving tribute to his dad, Charles Antetokounmpo who passed in 2017.
“I want to thank my dad. Obviously, my dad is not here with me,” he said.
He said: “Two years ago, I had a goal in my head that I was going to be the best player in the league and do whatever it takes to help my team win, and I’m going to win everything.
“Every day I step on the floor, I always think of my dad and that motivates me and pushes me to play harder and move forward.
“Even when my body is sore, even when I don’t feel like playing, I always show up and do the right thing.”
He continued: “I want to thank my team, my team-mates. MVP is not about stats and numbers. It is all about winning and all about making sure you go out there and do everything you can to win. I think that is what we did as a team.”
He also thanked his siblings and mum Veronica for their support of these years.
“I want to thank my amazing brothers. I love you guys. You guys are my ride or die, my role model, I look up to you guys. Thank you for everything you do for me. I want to thank my amazing mum. She’s my hero. She always saw the future in us and always believed in us,” he said.
He concluded: “And the end of the day, this is just the beginning. My goal is to win the championship and I’m going to do whatever it is to make that happen”.