By Eurohoops team/ email@example.com
With Panathinaikos not longer an option for him, the veteran forward concluded his professional career, but he will not leave the sport of basketball. He explained his plans with the following announcement.
I was never good at words. I preferred to act with deeds and decisions that marked my life and career. In this 20-year career, I gave, but I also got back everything. I have created strong friendships that stand the test of time and I have worked with great teammates and coaches, whom I have revered and respected. I was always playing with my heart. I never fooled anyone. I feel that I also contributed to winning important titles on the club level and also with the national team, which gave joy to our fans and created new generations of athletes and basket players.
I started a 16-year-old boy in Panathinaikos and without realizing it I spent 20 years on the courts. I loved the green shirt, I never had it, but I did not “sell it”, and I was fortunate to play in the NBA and in other big clubs in Europe. On a personal level, I became a father and this feeling is not compared to anything. I created my family, which was the stable companion for me in easy and difficult times. I want to thank the Giannakopoulos family, who also treated me as their child, offering me everything an athlete would like.
After a lot of thought, I decided that it was time to write my end-of-career titles. I gave what I had to give and since it was not meant to retire as a player of Panathinaikos, I would not want to continue playing professionally in another Greek or European club. But for me, basketball does not end here.
I will continue to play on the amateur level and I decided to play this year at Ilysiakos, the team which was my first and it’s connected to my past and to my father. I finally leave behind the highest level, but I will continue my favorite sport for as long as my heart says.