By Nikos Varlas/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The Euroleague champions decided to combine their Euroleague media day with the official presentation of the team! The owners of the team, however, where the ones who got the spotlight with their quotes about the goals of the team and their rivalry with Panathinaikos.
“I wish for a good season. My dream is to be in London. Our team is the same by 11/14 since last season. They say that now they know us. If they do, then let them come and play us! I don’t know how many teams won the Euroleague and stayed intact the next season”, said one of them, Panagiotis Aggelopoulos.
He also spoke about the new coach of the team, Giorgos Bartzokas: “We have been following his work all those years. We appreciate him. We believe that he is the best Greek coach and he can run the team. We have sold just 500 season tickets, we are Euroleague champions and we want our fans in our side”.
Panagiotis Aggelopoulos also spoke about the financial situation in Euroleague: “We won the title and our bonus was 250.000 euros. I believe Friday is a good game day and we will have more fans in the gyms. There are efforts in order to grow in other markets, like the UK and Germany., but this is not enough. Euroleague needs changes, or else in the end only the Russian and the Turks will continue to spend money”.
Aggelopoulos, however, doesn’t expect miracles, like the exhibition game in Berlin of Alba against Bayern with almost 9.000 fans in the gym: “We talked about different countries. There is wealth in there. There is free time and money to spend in order to enjoy basketball”.
His brother and co-owner of Olympiakos, George Aggelopoulos, commented on what Dimitris Giannakopoulos, the president of Panathinaikos, said about Olympiacos always having as its main goal in the Greek league the second place and also implied a possible tax evasion by Panathnaikos: “I agree. With the current members of the central refereeing board being the same, Olympiacos is the favorite for the second place. It was also like this last year. We also heard that mr. Giannakopoulos said that his team’s budget was 35 million euros. We refereed to the published balanced sheet of Panathinaikos. The total expenses seemed to be 13 million euros! So, one of those numbers is wrong. Our share capital is 75 million euros. Panathinaikos’ share capiral is 300.000 euros. You can make your own conclusions, I don’t want to say something more”.
Giorgos Barzokas, the first Greek coach who is charge of a reigning Euroleague champion, said: “I know in which bench I am seated, it’s the biggest team in Greece. I am ready. The media interest about this presentation proves the size of this team. Olympiacos is something huge. I wish us to stay healthy and smile at the end of the season. Euroleague is trying to approach NBA a little by little. There are more games in Top 16 and much stronger opponents. That’s why the organization of a team and the personnel is even more important”.