A lot of NBA stars work out together during the offseason, but Milwaukee Bucks All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo isn't with that trend. When Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, James Harden and other NBA players played pickup ball in New York over the summer, Antetokounmpo turned down an invitation.
"They wanted me to come, show up, and play and I was like, 'No. I'm good,'" Antetokounmpo said, via The Athletic. "'Thank you.'"
The way Antetokounmpo sees it, it just doesn't feel right to work out with guys that he will be competing directly against in a matter of months.
"I can't work out with you in the summer and then play you in a few months," Antetokounmpo said. "It feels weird. It doesn't feel right with me. Like other players, it's cool for other players, but I don't. I don't want to. Other guys do it.
"I hate it when …" [Antetokounmpo cuts himself off to pretend to put his arm around someone and pose for a picture]. "I hate that. I don't want [opponents] to see me to be buddy-buddy with me."
Antetokounmpo, whose Bucks are back in action on Monday against Cleveland (8 p.m. ET -- watch on fuboTV with the NBA League Pass extension), is protective of his game, and he doesn't want to potentially tip his hand to his competitors during a workout, which is something he feels happened to James while working with Durant during the summers of 2011 and 2012.
"I feel like with LeBron and K.D., K.D. did that to LeBron," Antetokounmpo said. "Take a lot of his thoughts and use it against him. And that's what I don't want guys doing to me."
Despite his stance, Antetokounmpo isn't against working with LeBron in the future, as long as it is in a one-on-one setting.
"If it's just me and him," Antetokounmpo said, when asked about working out with James. "Just me and him. I cannot do the pickup games and stuff like that."
For fans that might be tired of the buddy-buddy nature of the players prevalent in the NBA today, Antetokounmpo's approach represents a breath of fresh air.