By Rigas Dardalis/ Dardalis@eurohoops.net
The first visit was made at Milano, the second in Zagreb and the third in the “home” of Kostas Papanikolaou. Jason Filippi, Blazers’ director of European scouting was present in Thursday’s game between Olympiacos and Ikaros BC for the Greek league, having his eyes fixed in the Greek forward whose NBA rights belong to Portland.
Filipi had checked Papanikolaou for the first time this season in the road game against Milano for Euroleague’s first phase. Then the head of Blazers’ scouting Chad Buchanan had traveled to Zagreb in order to see Papanikolaou playing against Cedevita.
It’s obvious that the Blazers follow closely the progress of Papanikolaoy and they will continue to do it till the end of the season, in order to decide what will they do with the player. The question is if the team is willing to pay his one million euros buy out – part of it has to be paid by the player himself – in order to sign him for the 2013-14 season, or if they will wait until the summer of 2014, when Papanikolaou will be a free agent.