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It's all Greek with Giannis Antetokounmpo in one-on-one interview with TODAY'S TMJ4

Posted at 8:28 AM, Nov 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-14 12:33:12-05

With the Milwaukee Bucks officially moved in to Fiserv Forum and got off to a hot start to begin the 2018-19 NBA season, TODAY'S TMJ4 spoke to superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo in his native language of Greek. 

In an interview with Pete Zervakis, who also speaks Greek, Giannis said he gets a kick out of how fans in the United States pronounce and use his name. 

In Greece, the way people address someone named Giannis/Yiannis (pronounced YAH-nees there) is simply Yianni/Gianni (YAH-nee). 

"I've explained that to people, to some of our players, that if they want to call my name, say 'Yianni,'" Giannis said, in Greek, during a brief interview at the Bucks' new practice facility. "Some know to do it, some don't know. But look, both names are the same to me." 

As the interview continued, Giannis also discussed how Milwaukee has changed since he arrived six years ago. 

"Well the weather is the same," Giannis said. "There's a lot, a lot, of snow and cold. But, if you look closely, things are developing." 

"We have a new arena, a new practice facility. Things are terrific," He said. 

"The team is developing, the city is developing for the better, and we, in Milwaukee, are on the map now," Giannis said.  

He said, when in need of Greek food in the Brew City, he likes to go to Omega Restaurant on 27th Street. 

"Or I wait for my Mom to cook me Greek food," he added. 

The Bucks' All-Star also said he's touched by how many Greek-American fans gather to support him at NBA arenas across the United States when the Bucks come to town. 

"I feel really good when I see that," Giannis said. "I'm very, very happy that I can make them proud. It's a great honor to be able to bring Greeks to the stadium and for them to have something that makes them happy, something that they can rally around." 

Zervakis: "Would you have believed it, when you were a kid, that all these Greeks around the world would eventually know your name?" 

Antetokounmpo: "To tell you the truth, I wouldn't have believed it. I always dreamed of being a big basketball star, and of having people know me. But that was mostly for my family, because I wanted to take care of my family." 

"So much has come from what I've done (as a player)," Giannis said. "It's a terrific feeling, and it's because of the hard work I put in. I worked very hard, from the time I arrived here, and this is what you get back from all that hard work."