The party just never stops in Milwaukee. Thousands of fans gathered on the streets of the Cream City on Thursday to pay tribute to the Bucks as they celebrated the franchise’s first title in 50 years with a championship parade.
The crowd went nuts as a procession of trucks and open-air buses carrying the reigning NBA champions drove by. The heroes were all out, including NBA Finals MVP and Game 6 savior Giannis Antetokounmpo and future Olympians Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton. Also in attendance was the Larry O’Brien trophy that they famously captured Tuesday night.
Bucks in 6 chants fill the air
Fans serenaded Milwaukee players with their memorable Bucks in 6 chant. It has been a rallying cry for Bucks supporters these entire playoffs, with the chant originating back in 2013 when former player Brandon Jennings predicted that Milwaukee would beat the defending champions Miami Heat in six games.
The Bucks went on to lose that series via a sweep but that year proved to be a major turning point for the franchise. Milwaukee used the 15th pick in the first round of the 2013 NBA Draft to select a then-18-year-old Antetokounmpo. The Bucks then moved one month and four days after the draft, acquiring Middleton in a trade alongside Brandon Knight, Viacheslav Kravtsov in exchange for Jennings.
Antetokounmpo and Middleton started at the bottom with the Bucks, posting a 15-67 record in their first season with Milwaukee. They constantly worked on their games though, and eventually established themselves as one of the best duos in the NBA today, carrying the Bucks to that coveted championship.
That’s why it isn’t a complete surprise to see these two players form a solid bond with Milwaukee supporters. Antetokounmpo, in particular, has been embraced totally by the fans for the loyalty he showed to the team that drafted him eight years ago. Giannis ended all transfer speculation last year when he signed a supermax deal with the Bucks, and he has instantly rewarded that faith with a championship the following season.
Antetokounmpo and Milwaukee rejoice in their first title together
Antetokounmpo lavished the crowd with praise in his speech in the famous Deer District, saying, “Milwaukee, we did it, baby! We did it! This is our city, this is our city. Man, we did it! Unbelievable.”
Deer District was the site of one of the most incredible scenes in NBA Finals history last Tuesday. Sensing that the long-awaited championship was in reach, an estimated 100,000 people flocked to the area outside the Fiserv Forum to cheer on the Bucks in their Game 6 clash with the Phoenix Suns.
Jubilation and euphoria engulfed the massive crowd as the Bucks pulled off the 105-98 win, thanks in large part to Antetokounmpo’s monster 50-point performance in the series clincher. The Bucks’ championship run unified Milwaukee that has long ranked among the most segregated cities in America.
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