Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo recently underwent successful surgery to clean up loose cartilage in his left knee. Though he is questionable for the FIBA World Cup in August, he is expected to be ready to compete at the start of the NBA season.

New Bucks coach Adrian Griffin told reporters Wednesday that the surgery would not complicate the 2023-23 season for Antetokounmpo, who complained of lingering knee discomfort last year.

“He had a routine surgery on his left knee, and it went great,” Griffin said. “Everything went as planned, and we expect him back and ready to go in training camp.”

Though Antetokounmpo received an encouraging return timeline for the NBA season, he may not me available to represent Greece in the FIBA World Cup. The Athens native played for Greek club Filathlitikos B.C. before the 2013 NBA Draft and has previously enjoyed representing his country in international competition during the offseason. He played in both the 2014 and 2019 FIBA World Cups.

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“I enjoyed playing FIBA basketball,” Antetokounmpo said in a 2022 interview with Eurohoops. “I enjoyed playing and representing the national team. Wearing that jersey is totally different, representing 11 million Greeks and four million Greeks outside Greece. It is a great feeling and it is something that as long as I am healthy and I can go, I would because it is a totally different experience.”

Last season, Antetokounmpo and the Bucks still looked similar to their 2021 championship roster and earned the top seed in the Eastern Conference going into the NBA Playoffs. Antetokounmpo suffered an injury early in the team’s first series against the Miami Heat, and even after he returned, Jimmy Butler and the Heat seemed like the better team and won in five games.

With Khris Middleton headed for free agency, it will be even more important for Antetokounmpo to be at full strength going in the 2023-24 season, as the team will likely run through him even more than it has previously.

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