Trail Blazers (justifiably) irked by Giannis Antetokounmpo’s free-throw routine (video)

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Giannis Antetokounmpo made 7-of-8 free throws in Milwaukee’s two-point win over Portland last night.

I’m just not sure any of them should have counted.

The Trail Blazers frequently complained about Antetokounmpo taking more than the allowed 10 seconds to shoot a free throw after receiving the ball. Terry Stotts used an arm count. Players yelled from the bench, counting on their fingers until they ran out and then getting even more upset.

And they had a point.

I checked frame-by-frame, and Antetokounmpo repeatedly lingered long past the allowed time at the stripe. The above video shows all eight free throws from both telecasts.

Here’s how long Antetokounmpo possessed the ball before shooting each free throw. A “+” designates that neither broadcast showed precisely when Antetokounmpo received and/or shot the ball, so I counted only when the ball was first and last visible in his hands.

  • First: 12.9+ seconds
  • Second: 13.0 seconds
  • Third: 11.4+ seconds
  • Fourth: 12.4+ seconds
  • Fifth: 12.3 seconds
  • Sixth: 12.6 seconds
  • Seventh: 13.1 seconds
  • Eighth:  13.7 seconds

Antetokounmpo was shown with possession of the ball for at least 11 seconds on every possession. All of those should have been violations.

He probably would’ve adjusted if called for a violation early, but that could have also thrown off his rhythm on later attempts.

These were decisive points in the Bucks’ 90-88 win, and they happened despite the Trail Blazers clearly alerting the referees to the problem.