By Aris Barkas/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The hottest name in Greek basketball for the past two days is Nikos Bellos. Never heard of him? Don’t be surprised, because he is not a marquee name. What he did however is equally tragic, laughable, admirable and the biggest news around basketball related media.
It was proven that 33 years old Bellos, a former player in minor leagues and president of an amateur club near the city of Chalkida, has a contract with Ilisiakos of ESAKE’s league. And now comes the funny part of the story. Bellos reportedly paid the team 12.000 euros in order to play only on the road games against Olympiacos, Panathinaikos, Aris and PAOK and have the experience of the biggest domestic league.
Bellos initially approached Ikaros BC, a club which relocated last summer to Chalkida, but the answer was the expected one: negative. He wasn’t discouraged and made the same offer to the small Athenian club of Ilisiakos which accepted the deal. Bellos doesn’t practice with the team and the plan was to be present only in those four specific games. ESAKE confirmed that there is a valid contract with him and the team, however the “sponsor-player” after all the media buzz announced via facebook that he is not planning on playing basketball this season.
However it’s obvious that the financial crisis in Greece creates opportunities of every kind, even the possibility of fulfilling a childhood dream just in the price of 12.000 euros.