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Giannis Antetokounmpo is Greek


By Aris Barkas/ barkas@eurohoops.net

Giannis and Thanasis Adetokunbo (video) were born and raised in Greece, went to school in Greece, speak Greek, but because their parents were Nigerian immigrants they didn’t automatically get the Greek citizenship.

That changed on Thursday. Both brothers are now officially Greeks, as they wanted to, despite the state’s recent change of citizenship laws. It was not only a matter of bureaucracy, but also a political subject, since Adetokunbos are probably the first children of non Greek immigrants who got the citizenship. However, their talent was their battling ram and with the help of the Greek basketball federation, they finally got what they wanted.

Practically, that means both players can now play for the Greek national team and also that they can legally travel abroad. Their name is spelled officially “Antetokounmpo” now according to the Greek spelling and Giannis is expected to be present in the upcoming Eurocamp in Treviso, having already missed the Nike hoop summit, because he didn’t had any traveling documents.

In a statement both brothers released, after thanking everyone helping them, they added: “It was a dream come true for us and it will be an honor to be called at some point in the Greek national team”.