Sloukas wins MVP and EuroLeague: “This is why I am here”

2024-05-27T00:01:25+00:00 2024-05-27T00:02:45+00:00.

Giannis Askounis

27/May/24 00:01

The MVP of the 2024 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four, Kostas Sloukas explains how his decision to join Panathinaikos Aktor was the right choice

By Aris Barkas/

BERLIN – After a poor showing in the Semifinals, Kostas Sloukas produced 24 points in the championship game on Sunday. Leading Panathinaikos Aktor to a comeback win opposite defending champion Real Madrid and to the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague championship, he was named most valuable player of the Final Four.

“We finished second in the Regular Season. We went through a battle with Maccabi. And from there, we showed our strength in the Final Four,” the 34-year-old combo guard recapped the continental portion of his first season with the Greens, “I want to thank the fans for their support. I am very proud of my teammates, the coach, the owner who believed in us.”

Sloukas, 34, became a four-time EuroLeague champion with earlier triumphs spreading to Olympiacos and Fenerbahce. However, getting the MVP nod in the Final Four was a first.

“This is why I am here,” he referred to his decision to switch to the opposite side of the Eternal Derby of Greece, from Olympiacos to Panathinaikos last summer, “Panathinaikos got the seventh championship and I got my fourth.”

With all his teammates being crowned champions in Europe’s premier club continental competition for the first time, head coach Ergin Ataman was the second exception of the night. The Turkish coach climbing to the top of the EuroLeague followed similar achievements in a back-to-back with Anadolu Efes in 2021 and 2022.

“He trusted me from the first day, I trusted him from the first day. He believed in me, I believed in him. We respected each other, and had incredible communication and general cooperation,” Sloukas described his relationship with Ataman, “I am very happy for him.”

“From the first day, he told Panathinaikos fans to buy Final Four tickets, and now nobody can say anything to him,” he added, “This is something historical. We won by 15 points in the semifinal and 15 in the final, and we deserved to be European champions 100 percent.”

Qualified for the Semifinals before the EuroLeague Final Four, the next stage of Greece’s Stoiximan Basket League Playoffs and a best-of-three series against Aris Midea sets up the next challenge for Panathinaikos.

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