By Stavros Barbarousis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
After spending five successful years away from Greece, Giannis Bourousis chose to return to his country after 2011 to play for Panathinaikos. During the Media Day of the “Greens” he discussed the reasons that he didn’t chose to sign with an NBA team, despite the offers he received from the best league in the planet.
“I was about to go to the NBA, before signing with Panathinaikos. It was my main goal and if I found exactly what I was looking for, I’d make the jump. But I didn’t because I wanted to sign a two-year deal,” he said to Eurohoops. “All I got was offers for one year only. I couldn’t say yes to them and have to take my family in the USA just for some months.”
The Greek center ultimately joined the six-time Euroleague champions, but the door to the NBA is still not closed from his part. “When my contract with Panathinaikos is over… well… perhaps then I can say yes to a one-year proposal.”
Bourousis’ previous season in Baskonia was the best in his career. Most recently, Velimir Perasovic, his coach in the Basques said that the big guy’s performances were not surprising and that he expects from him to repeat them this year. “I had a fantastic relationship with coach Perasovic from day 1 in Baskonia. Over the years, you can count the people who have truly helped me to become much better in the fingers of one hand, and he is one of them. He drove me to improvement along with my Baskonia teammates of course. I wish him the best in Anadolu Efes, a club with big goals. Now, Panathinaikos is not about what Giannis does as an individual. Ιt is about what the team does. There are many talented guys in the team, so we have to work as whole”.
If he could pick one player to have as a teammate in Panathinaikos, who would be his choice? “Adam Hanga. We could find each other on court with eyes closed last year.”