Giannis Antekounmpo Leads Greece to First Basketball Olympics Since 2008

Greece has qualified for the Paris Games, and Giannis Antetokounmpo and his teammates are now Olympians.

Giannis Leads Greece to Victory:

The Bucks star shined with 23 points against Croatia on Sunday, securing Greece’s spot in the Olympics. Alongside him, Georgios Papagiannis scored 19 points and Nick Calathes added 14, marking Greece’s first Olympic berth since 2008. “It’s very nice to qualify because that’s the first step,” Papagiannis said. “At the Olympics, we’re looking to do something really good there.”

Qualified Teams for the Olympics:

With most nations now qualified, Greece joins teams like the United States, France (as hosts), Germany, Japan, Serbia, South Sudan, Canada, and Australia. These teams earned their spots based on performances in last summer’s FIBA World Cup.

Giannis’s Journey Through Qualification:

Giannis had an impressive run starting with 32 points against the Dominican Republic. He then scored 13 against Slovenia before resting against Egypt. The intense semifinal win over Luka Doncic’s Slovenia led up to their final victory against Croatia.

“We knew we had a chance to do something special after so many years,” Giannis shared post-game. “We came in knowing we had four finals to play.” His excitement was clear: “We’re very hungry as a team… Coach Vasilis Spanoulis puts that fire in our bellies.”

Fans believe this team can achieve greatness at the Olympics.

Looking Ahead to Paris:

“Now going into the Olympics,” Giannis continued, “we have nothing to lose.” He emphasized playing Greek basketball no matter who they face. “I believe we have an incredible team and that we can accomplish something special.”

Praise for Coach Vasilis Spanoulis:

During postgame interviews with his coach beside him, Giannis expressed admiration for Vasilis Spanoulis: “All my national team coaches were great minds… But coach Spanoulis is a winner.” He described how passionate Spanoulis was during shootarounds: “He could have played today.”

Greece will compete in Group A of the Olympic Games alongside Australia and Canada. They will also face either Spain or Bahamas.

“I just love having someone like him next to me,” Giannis said about his coach. “His identity goes through our whole team.”

James Shotwell
James Shotwell
James, a dedicated writer for BasketballHour, holds a degree in English and Creative Writing. A genuine sports enthusiast and skilled betting advice provider, he writes engaging articles and valuable winning strategies for sports.

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