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Philippine striker remembers the feeling of marking Giannis Antetokounmpo at FIBA ​​World Cup

Philippine striker remembers the feeling of marking Giannis Antetokounmpo at FIBA ​​World Cup

Gabe Norwood shared the experiences of the day he encountered the NBA's future MVP.

At 2014 FIBA World Cup, the Philippine basketball team has confronted Greece in Seville. In the Greek basketball team, there was a 19-year-old player Giannis Antetokounmpo, who just finished the NBA rookie year in the Milwaukee Bucks.

In that match, Gabe Norwood was instructed by coach Chot Reyes to tighten up Giannis Antetokounmpo. Although Greek Freak did not show much at the time, but physical factors alone made Gabe Norwood worry.

“We know well that not many players have such good bodies. He is 2m11 tall, possesses an endless long arm span and incredible strength", said the 2-line Filipino-American mediator. Rain or Shine veteran then predicted that Giannis Antetokounmpo would be the NBA's big star.

“I remember clearly that a certain coach or staff member of the Milwaukee Bucks had been standing beside him 24 hours a day for 7 days, whether at the hotel or anywhere. Perhaps the Milwaukee Bucks saw the potential and what he could do”, recalled Gabe Norwood.

After five years, Giannis Antetokounmpo showed that the vision of the Milwaukee Bucks was accurate. He led the team to the first eastern final after 18 years and became the second MVP in the history of the Deer, following the great Kareem Abdul Jabbar in 1974.

Philippine striker remembers the feeling of marking Giannis Antetokounmpo at FIBA ​​World Cup

However, in 2014, Gabe Norwood did not have too much trouble following the young man 10 years his age. Giannis Antetokounmpo has only 3 points from the free throws and 0-3 performance from live pitching situations.

"The Greek basketball team then had many good and experienced veterans. Most of the ball passes through his hand. Anyway, Giannis Antetokounmpo was 18 or 19 years old at the time and only tried to find an official match”, recalled the brother of former famous NFL player Jordan Norwood.

A few days ago, Giannis Antetokounmpo confirmed that he would play for the Greek basketball team at 2019 FIBA World Cup in China. The reigning MVP of NBA and teammates will face the Brazilian, New Zealand and Montenegro basketball teams in Group D.

Gabe Norwood this year is 34 years old and FIBA World Cup is about to be the last time he wore the Philippines basketball team. In China, Gilas Pilipinas will face Angola, Itallia and Serbia basketball teams in Group F. Gabe Norwood could only face Giannis Antetokounmpo in the semi-finals or finals.