The narrative of Giannis Antetokounmpo and his game for his career has always been revolved around him getting a reliable jump shot. He can already do everything else on an elite level, so imagine what he would do with a jumper? Well, some would say that shot has come a long way and made him unstoppable, while others still have their doubts. Well, the championship and countless accolades speak for themselves, but still, there are those that see flaws in Giannis's game. For example, NBA legend Tracy McGrady.
T-Mac thinks Giannis would struggle in his era
Tracy McGrady maybe isn't one of the first names when you think of the greatest players in the history of the game, but T-Mac was one of the most electrifying and lethal scorers in the 2000s. Although he never managed to get past the first round, McGrady won the hearts of many fans with his flashy playstyle and swagger on the court. Tracy was torching defenses in an era that still emphasized rugged play on that side of the court, as he can easily be listed amongst the most skillful scorers in NBA history.
Tracy was a one-of-a-kind talent, combining his size with athleticism and a sweet-shooting touch, so you could say he knows a lot about the art of getting buckets. So when he gives his perspective on today's NBA and stars, it is really interesting to hear what he has to say. When talking about Giannis, T-Mac shared why he thinks the "Greek Freak" would struggle in his era:
"I think he would have struggled because of how closed up the paint was. It was tough offensively because the defense was so great. If you can't shoot, it's gonna be hard. And Giannis' game is predicated on coming downhill. It would have been tough to be who he is today, back then. "
Tracy McGrady, The Big Podcast with Shaq
The difference in the playstyle
Back in the 2000s, the game wasn't as spread out and offense-oriented as it is today. Today the floor is much more open, and an athletic freak like Giannis is taking advantage of it. So putting Giannis into the older era would make him work much harder for his money. But I doubt someone as talented and established as Antetokounmpo wouldn't find his way.
Giannis is known for being a hard worker that becomes better every year, and he would eventually come to an MVP level even in the 2000s. I mean, we are not talking about the 80s or 90s when NBA defense was at its peak. You could convince me that he would have a hard time back then, but 15-20 years ago, Giannis would have still made an impact. I mean, look at Shaq in that era, who dominated with strength without a jump shot. A guy like Giannis, who can actually hit from downtown, would also be unstoppable.