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Report: Bucks tell Giannis Antetokounmpo team will open checkbook
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Report: Bucks tell Giannis Antetokounmpo team will open checkbook

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Giannis Antetokounmpo photo

Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo shouts from the bench in the second half of Milwaukee's season-ending loss to the Miami Heat on Tuesday night.

MILWAUKEE — In a three-hour lunch meeting last Friday in Milwaukee, Bucks co-owner and governor Marc Lasry made it clear to reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo that the franchise is willing to spend into the luxury tax to deliver him a championship supporting cast, sources told ESPN on Monday.

The Bucks’ payroll will be close to the proposed $132.7 million luxury-tax threshold for 2020-21.

They are expected to talk further once Antetokounmpo returns from a vacation, sources said.

Antetokounmpo has a decision to make in the offseason on whether he will sign an extension with Milwaukee or enter the 2020-21 season in the final year of his contract and eligible for free agency in 2021.

Milwaukee will offer Antetokounmpo a supermax deal worth 35% of the Bucks’ cap — somewhere between $220 million and $250 million over five years based on the new salary cap figures.

After owning the best regular-season record in the NBA for a second straight year, the Bucks were eliminated by the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference semifinals in five games. Antetokounmpo suffered a sprained ankle and missed parts of Game 4 and all of Game 5.

Milwaukee plans to bring back coach Mike Budenholzer, sources said, and he will work with general manager Jon Horst and ownership on reshaping a roster that has played better basketball in the past two regular seasons than it has in the playoffs.

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