Central Notes: Giannis, Mamukelashvili, Bulls, Pacers

Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo exited Greece’s 90-69 win over Estonia on Thursday early due to what the Greek team is referring to as a “light” right ankle sprain, per John Rammas of Eurohoops. Although Antetokounmpo checked out in the third quarter and didn’t return, the injury isn’t viewed as serious.

According to an Associated Press report (via ESPN), Greece’s head coach, Dimitrios Itoudis, said after the game that the Bucks forward received ice and treatment. However, it doesn’t sound like Giannis’ availability for the upcoming single-elimination stage of EuroBasket is in jeopardy. “It’s all good,” Itoudis said.

Here’s more from around the Central Division:

  • Eric Nehm of The Athletic checks in on how the Bucks‘ international players have been performing at EuroBasket 2022. While Antetokounmpo has obviously excelled, Milwaukee is also presumably encouraged by the play of two-way forward Sandro Mamukelashvili, who averaged 15.2 PPG and 11.0 RPG in the group stage for Georgia.
  • Given that Lonzo Ball‘s lengthy injury absence last season hurt the Bulls on both ends of the court, Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic wonders if the team is better built to withstand a Ball injury in 2022/23. A recent report indicated that Chicago’s starting point guard may not be ready for the start of the regular season due to a lingering knee issue.
  • The Pacers have hired Isaac Yacob as their head video coordinator, sources tell Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files (subscription required). According to Agness, Yacob – who previously worked for the Kings – built a strong rapport with Tyrese Haliburton in Sacramento.
  • In case you missed it, we’re asking you to vote on the projected win totals of all five Central teams for the 2022/23 season.
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