Vassilis Spanoulis

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Vassilis Spanoulis
Vassilis SpanoulisOly (cropped) (cropped).JPG
Spanoulis with Olympiacos in 2013
No. 7 – Olympiacos
Position Point guard / Shooting guard
League Greek Basket League
Personal information
Born (1982-08-07) 7 August 1982 (age 36)
Larissa, Greece
Nationality Greece
Listed height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Listed weight 210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
NBA draft 2004 / Round: 2 / Pick: 50th overall
Selected by the Dallas Mavericks
Playing career 1999–present
Career history
1999–2001 Gymnastikos S. Larissas
2001–2005 Maroussi
2005–2006 Panathinaikos
2006–2007 Houston Rockets
2007–2010 Panathinaikos
2010–present Olympiacos
Career highlights and awards

EuroLeague career stats leaders since the 2000–01 season

Professional Greek League career stats leaders

Vassilis Spanoulis (Greek: Βασίλης Σπανούλης; born August 7, 1982) is a Greek professional basketball player for Olympiacos Piraeus of the Greek Basket League and the EuroLeague. A 6 ft 4 in (193 cm) tall combo guard, he is nicknamed Kill Bill, V-Span, and MVP ("Most Vassilis Player").[1][2] Spanoulis was named the Balkan Athlete of the Year in 2009,[3] the All-Europe Player of the Year in 2012 and 2013,[4] the Vatican's World Athlete of the Year (Giuseppe Sciacca Award) in 2013 and the EuroLeague MVP the same year. He has earned a record eight All-EuroLeague Team selections.[5]

Spanoulis first played for Gymnastikos S. Larissas, and enjoyed a highly successful career start. His skill-set earned him a transfer to Athens and Maroussi, where he won the Greek Basket League's Best Young Player award in 2003. Following an impressive 2004–05 season, during which he helped lead Maroussi to the Greek league finals and the EuroCup quarterfinals, he moved to Panathinaikos, where he became one of European basketball's major stars.[6] In the 2005–06 EuroLeague season, Spanoulis made his debut in impressive fashion, earning his first All-EuroLeague Team selection as a rookie in the competition. After a stint in the NBA with the Houston Rockets during the 2006–07 season, he returned to Panathinaikos and helped lead them to a EuroLeague title in 2009, being voted EuroLeague Final Four MVP.[7]

Spanoulis' transfer to Olympiacos, in the summer of 2010, marked a new step in his career, given the feisty rivalry with Panathinaikos. Within a young and rebuilding team, Spanoulis not only led a EuroLeague title run in 2012, but went on to achieve a historical repeat in 2013. In the process, he gained another two EuroLeague Final Four MVP awards, thus joining Toni Kukoč as the only players in the history of European basketball to achieve that distinction on three occasions.[8] Under his leadership, Olympiacos reached another two EuroLeague Finals in 2015 and 2017.

Spanoulis played an instrumental role on the senior men's Greek national team's EuroBasket 2005 gold medal team. Most importantly, he was one of the main stars of Greece's 2006 FIBA World Championship silver medal team, scoring 22 points in the memorable victory over Team USA (101–95) in the tournament's semifinals. It was, however, Greece's bronze medal at the EuroBasket 2009 that emphasized Spanoulis' leadership within an injury-plagued Greek national team, consequently earning an All-EuroBasket Team honor.[9]

Professional career[edit]

Gymnastikos S. Larissas[edit]

Spanoulis began his basketball career with the youth teams of Gymnastikos and Keravnos in Larissa, Greece, playing in the Greek junior levels from 1994, until 1999. He made his professional debut in the year 1999, at the age of 17, with the senior club of Gymnastikos S. Larissas. In the two seasons of 1999–00 and 2000–01, he played in the 2nd-tier level Greek 2nd Division, with Gymnastikos.[10]

Maroussi Athens[edit]

After playing with Gymnastikos S. Larissas, in the Greek 2nd Division, Spanoulis signed a four-year contract with Maroussi of the top-tier level Greek Basket League, the European-wide 3rd-tier level FIBA Korać Cup, and later, the European-wide 2nd-tier level EuroCup. He played with Maroussi until 2005.

2001–02 season[edit]

During the 2001–02 season, Spanoulis helped to lead Maroussi to the Greek Cup Final. This was the first time the team had ever made it to the Greek Cup title game. Maroussi also competed in the European-wide 3rd-tier level FIBA Korać Cup 2001–02 season.

2002–03 season[edit]

Spanoulis was voted the Greek Basket League's Best Young Player, of the 2002–03 season.

2003–04 season[edit]

In the 2003–04 season, Spanoulis helped to lead Maroussi to the Greek Basket League Finals. He also helped lead Maroussi to the 2003–04 season's FIBA Europe League (later called FIBA EuroChallenge) Final.[11] In the FIBA Europe League, Spanoulis averaged 10.8 points per game, and 6.4 assists per game, off the bench for Maroussi. He also shot 40% from three-point range. He was also named the Greek League Most Improved Player that same season.

Spanoulis was then drafted in the 2nd round, of the 2004 NBA draft, by the Dallas Mavericks, following this sudden emergence. He also made it onto the senior men's Greek national basketball team, at the 2004 Athens Summer Olympic Games.

2004–05 season[edit]

In the Greek Basket League 2004–05 season, his last season with Maroussi, Spanoulis averaged 15.9 points per game, and shot 37.8% from 3-point range, in 35 games played in the Greek Basket League competition. He then averaged 15.2 points per game, and shot 40.0% from 3-point range, in 12 games of play, in the European-wide 2nd-tier level EuroCup's 2004–05 season. For the year in total, Spanoulis averaged 15.7 points per game, and shot 38.3% from 3-point range, in 47 games played with Maroussi. He played in the 2005 Greek League All-Star Game, and was named to the Greek Basket League's Best Five Team. This was a breakthrough year for Vassilis, as he had averaged 11.1 points per game the previous season. He was considered to be one of the most improved players in Europe for the year. He helped to lead Maroussi to the 2nd place of the Greek Basket League, for the regular season. At the end of the year, Spanoulis was voted the European 6th Man of the Year, and Rookie of the Year in the EuroCup.[12] He started being called, "The Greek Steve Nash", by some European fans,[13][14] after this season.

Panathinaikos Athens[edit]

2005–06 season[edit]

Following his outstanding season in 2004–05 with Maroussi, Spanoulis signed a 3-year contract worth 1.6 million euros net income, with EuroLeague powerhouse Panathinaikos Athens. Spanoulis and his agent, Miško Ražnatović,[15] set the contract terms so that Spanoulis would have a buyout clause after just one year, and set the buyout amount at US $400,000. This was Spanoulis' first season playing at the highest European-wide professional club level.

With Panathinaikos, in the Greek Basket League 2005–06 season, he won the both Greek Basket League championship and the Greek Cup. His team went 24–2 during the Greek Basket League regular season, and 8–0 during the Greek League playoffs, for an overall record of 32–2 in the national domestic league championship, and also went undefeated in the Greek Cup, at 5–0, for an overall record of 37–2 in Greek competitions. He played in the 2006 Greek League All-Star Game, and was named to the Greek Basket League's Best Five Team.[16]

Spanoulis was also selected to the EuroLeague 2005–06 season's All-EuroLeague Second Team.[10][17]

In 28.8 minutes per game of play, during the 2005–06 EuroLeague competition, Spanoulis averaged 14.6 points, 3.1 assists, 2.0 rebounds, and 1.4 steals, in 23 games of EuroLeague play, with Panathinaikos Athens for the season. He also shot 61.8% in 2-point shooting, and 36.8% from 3-point range; 53.4% overall.

He was the team's leading scorer, even though he often came off the bench. He won the EuroLeague MVP of the Round award twice during the season. In 2005–06, his team finished the EuroLeague with a record of 16–7. Spanoulis was also voted as the 7th best worldwide European player of the year (including NBA players) in 2006, by FIBA Europe, in their FIBA Europe Player of the Year award voting.[10][18][19][20][21][22]

Many fans in Europe began calling him, "Euro Kobe",[23] after such a dominant rookie season of EuroLeague.[10][18][19][21][22][24]

Houston Rockets[edit]

On July 19, 2006,[10] Spanoulis opted out of the final two years of his contract with Panathinaikos Athens, and signed a three-year deal (2 years guaranteed) with the NBA's Houston Rockets, who paid for his contract buyout from Panathinaikos. The contract was worth $5,832,000.[25] His buyout from his European club was $400,000.

The contract amount was for an average of $1,944,000 per season. The Rockets had acquired the rights to Spanoulis on draft night (June 24, 2004), when Houston swapped draft pick #55 Luis Flores, and cash considerations of $300,000 with the Dallas Mavericks, for Spanoulis (pick #50).[10][26]

"He's a very versatile ball handler," Rockets [then] general manager, Carroll Dawson, said. "He's a good finisher and a very good prospect. He wants to be a great player. Everybody is going to like this young man because he is a very hard-nosed player. We have watched his progress very closely," Dawson said. "It's a big adjustment to come to the NBA from Europe, but he is a hard worker."[27][28]

Rockets [then] Director of Player Personnel, Dennis Lindsey, stated the following about Spanoulis prior to the team signing him. "We're very, very happy with his progress," said Lindsey. "He changed clubs this year from Maroussi to the bigger club this year, Panathinaikos. For those not familiar with European basketball, they are like the New York Yankees of Greece and one of the two or three better organizations in Europe. They are an NBA level club. From our standpoint, we really like what Vassilis has done. He is their leading scorer. They are 9–1 in the EuroLeague and they have already qualified for the top sixteen."[29]

Lindsey praised Spanoulis' offensive ability. "He's got a couple of characteristics that we like," added Lindsey. "He can really drive and get the ball in the paint, and he's relentless with it. He kind of plays basketball like a fullback a little bit, where he just kind of breaks through the line and there's contact on a lot of plays."[29]

"The owner and Jeff and Carroll really like what they've seen so far and we've made a couple of trips over and hopefully in the near future we can have him as a Rocket because we think he can help us."[29]

2006–07 NBA season[edit]

Spanoulis, during his season with the Houston Rockets.

Spanoulis saw limited playing time with the Houston Rockets during his rookie NBA year in 2006–07, averaging 2.7 points and 0.9 assists in 8.8 minutes per game, on 31.9% field goal shooting (17.2% from behind the 3-point line), in 31 games played off the bench.[30]

During Spanoulis' first NBA season, there was a dispute between him and Rockets head coach, Jeff Van Gundy, over playing time. There was an issue between the team's management, Spanoulis, and the coach as well, over the contract that Spanoulis had signed. In order to sign with the Rockets, and fulfill his dreams of playing in the NBA, Spanoulis took a considerably smaller contract than the one that was being offered to him by his Greek team, Panathinaikos Athens. He still had two years under his contract with Panathinaikos, but his buyout was small, and could be paid by the Rockets.

Spanoulis agreed to play for Houston, at a price of $1,944,000 gross income per season, for 3 years, passing up on his former team Panathinaikos Athens' much larger offer of 1.6 million euros net income per season, over 3 years, just for a chance of playing in the NBA. Spanoulis made the Rockets' rotation,[31] but eventually, there was a falling out between him and Rockets coach Van Gundy, after Van Gundy benched Spanoulis, after the coach claimed that he had played poorly, citing that rookie players are dangerous for coaches that are in contract years, and that Spanoulis was too turnover prone and lacking in outside shooting touch to be a good fit in Van Gundy's offensive system design. Said Van Gundy about the situation: "(Spanoulis) says, 'I was [Tracy] McGrady back home.' Great. McGrady is McGrady here," .. "I feel badly for him. He feels he was misled. Frankly, he's been his own worst enemy in many ways. Some of it is excuses. His turnovers have been high; his fouls have been high; his shooting percentage has been low. I would rather anybody start out with self-evaluation—what can I do better?—versus lash out and blame. Because I'm not playing him now doesn't mean he won't play in the future or we don't feel he could be a good player. I think he's allowed his disappointment to go to discouragement, which has, at times, stunted his improvement. We'll see. We'll see."[32]

Spanoulis was traded by the Rockets, to the San Antonio Spurs, on July 12, 2007, along with a 2009 second-round draft pick, in exchange for center Jackie Butler, and the rights to Argentinian power forward Luis Scola.[33][34] On August 19, 2007, the Spurs released Spanoulis, giving him the chance to return to Greece to play for Panathinaikos Athens, as he had requested. This was officially announced on August 23, 2007.[35]

Allegedly, due to "family reasons," Spanoulis decided that he would not remain in the NBA, with his agent going as far as, comparing the Rockets reluctance to break his contract to slavery.[36] Spanoulis, instead opted to return to Panathinaikos, to once again play in the Greek Basket League and the EuroLeague.[15]

In June 2013, Spanoulis claimed that Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy told him on the first day he arrived at Houston that since he was a rookie, and unfamiliar to Van Gundy, he would be benched for the season. Spanoulis also claimed that the Houston Rockets' next head coach, Rick Adelman, wanted to keep him, and also that both Tony Parker and Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs were interested in having him on their team.[37]

In November 2015, the General Manager of the San Antonio Spurs, R.C. Buford, confirmed to the Greek press that the Spurs made the trade for Spanoulis with the intention of keeping him and having him play on their team. Buford also confirmed that it was Spanoulis' choice to not play with the Spurs, and to return to play in Greece.[38][39]

Back to Panathinaikos Athens[edit]

2007–08 season[edit]

On August 19, 2007, Spanoulis was released by the San Antonio Spurs, after deciding he wanted to play in Greece during the 2007–08 season. This was due to the fact that his mother was in poor health, and that Spanoulis wanted to be near her.[40] Spanoulis signed a 3-year contract with Panathinaikos,[41] the then defending EuroLeague champions. He was signed to play both point guard and shooting guard, along with fellow Greek national team star, Dimitris Diamantidis. Former NBA player, Šarūnas Jasikevičius, would later join them in the team's guard rotation.

The contract Spanoulis signed was for 3-years, at 5,500,000 euros net income salary,[42] plus a $1,166,400 contract buyout from his NBA San Antonio Spurs contract (Panathinaikos paid the buyout, so it did not count against the Spurs' salary cap). Spanoulis' agent set up the contract so that Spanoulis could opt out of it after one year. Spanoulis originally stated that, after the first year of his contract, he might opt out of it and return to San Antonio to play in the NBA again.[40]

During the 2007–08 season, Spanoulis led his team, Panathinaikos, in both points scored (661) and assists (215), over 36 games played in the Greek Basket League 2007–08 season, and 20 games played in the EuroLeague 2007–08 season. He averaged 11.8 points per game and 3.8 assists per game for the season, in 56 games total. Spanoulis was the Greek Basket League assists leader. He was voted as a starter to the Greek League All-Star Game, and to the Greek Basket League's Best Five Team.

Spanoulis helped Panathinaikos win the Greek basketball double, as the club won both the Greek Basket League championship, and the Greek Cup title in 2008. In the Greek Cup Final, against Panathinaikos' arch-rival Olympiacos, Spanoulis helped to lead his team to the championship cup victory, by scoring 20 points and dishing out 7 assists.

2008–09 season[edit]

In 2009, Spanoulis led Panathinaikos to the coveted Triple Crown championship, as they won the EuroLeague 2008–09 season championship, the Greek League 2008–09 season championship, and the Greek Cup title, all in the same season. Spanoulis was named the 2009 EuroLeague Final Four MVP,[43] and also the 2009 Greek League MVP.[44] Following this season, Spanoulis was named the Balkan Athlete of the Year in 2009, an award given to the best athlete of the Balkans region.[3]

2009–10 season[edit]

Spanoulis also won the Greek League 2009–10 season's championship, with Panathinaikos.

Olympiacos Piraeus[edit]

2010–11 season[edit]

In July 2010, after much speculation concerning his free agency and his next contract, Spanoulis signed a three-year contract with the Greek Basket League club Olympiacos Piraeus, worth €13,200,000 euros gross income,[45] or €7,200,000 euros net income. In his first year with Olympiacos, Spanoulis won the Greek Cup, was named to the EuroLeague's All Second Team, and was the Greek Basket League assists leader.

2011–12 season[edit]

In 2012, Spanoulis won both the EuroLeague and Greek Basket League championships. He was also named to the All-EuroLeague First Team, and won the EuroLeague Final Four MVP, for the second time in his career. He became the fourth player to win the award multiple times. Furthermore, he once again led the Greek League in assists. He was also named the Greek Basket League MVP, and the Greek Basket League Finals MVP. Finally, Spanoulis was named the All-Europe Player of the Year in 2012.

2012–13 season[edit]

Spanoulis was named the EuroLeague MVP in 2013.[5] He was also named the 2013 EuroLeague Final Four MVP, after once again leading Olympiacos to the EuroLeague championship. He became just the second player to win both the EuroLeague MVP and the EuroLeague Final Four MVP in the same season, along with Dimitris Diamantidis; and he also became just the second player to win the EuroLeague Final Four MVP award 3 times, along with Toni Kukoč.[46]

Spanoulis also won the Giuseppe Sciacca International Award for Sport, an award given by the Vatican to the World's Best Athlete of the Year, between the ages of 18 to 35, in 2013.[47][48] He was also named the All-Europe Player of the Year, for the second time, in 2013.[49]

2013–14 season[edit]

Spanoulis signed a 3-year contract extension, worth €6,000,000 euros net income,[50] with Olympiacos in July 2013.[51] With Olympiacos, he won the 2013 edition of the FIBA Intercontinental Cup, being named the MVP of the tournament.[52][53] In May 2014, he was named to the All-EuroLeague Team, for the sixth time in his career.[54]

2014–15 season[edit]

In May 2015, Spanoulis was chosen to the All-EuroLeague First Team, for his performance during the season, his seventh All-EuroLeague Team honour, which is a record in European basketball history (shared with Juan Carlos Navarro).[55] He led Olympiacos to the 2015 EuroLeague Final, and he also won the 2014–15 season's Greek League championship with Olympiacos, and was voted the MVP of the league's finals.

2015–16 season[edit]

Spanoulis won the 2015–16 season's Greek League championship. In game 2 of the 2015–16 Greek League Finals, against Olympiacos' arch-rivals, Panathinaikos, Spanoulis hit a game-winning buzzer-beating 3 pointer.[56] In game 3 of the Greek League Finals, he scored 11 points in the last 3 minutes and 1 second of the 4th quarter, to seal the victory for his team.[57] In game 4 of the Greek League Finals, held at Nikos Galis Olympic Indoor Hall, Olympiacos won in the game's second overtime period, after Spanoulis hit another game-winning 3 point field goal, with 1.9 seconds remaining in the game.[58] He was subsequently named the 2016 Greek League MVP,[59][60] and the 2016 Greek League Finals MVP.[61][62]

2016–17 season[edit]

In June 2016, Spanoulis signed a new 2-year contract extension with Olympiacos, lasting through the 2017–18 season.[63] The contract was worth €3,000,000 euros net income (€1.5 million euros net income per season).[64] In the season's EuroLeague competition, Spanoulis led Olympiacos to the 2017 EuroLeague Final.

2017–18 season[edit]

During the 2017–18 season, Spanoulis became the EuroLeague's all-time leader in assists,[65][66] and the Greek Professional Basket League's all-time leader in points scored.[67][68] In May 2018, he was named the All-EuroLeague Second Team for the 2017–18 season, his career eighth team nomination.[69] On July 2, 2018, Spanoulis signed a one-year extension with Olympiacos.[70]

National team career[edit]

Greek junior national team[edit]

Spanoulis, in action with the senior Greek national team.

Spanoulis was a key member of the Greek national junior team at the FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship's 2000 tournament. Greece finished in third place in the tournament, winning the bronze medal.[71] Spanoulis was on the Greek national junior team that finished in first place, and thus won the gold medal, at the 2002 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship. During the 2002 FIBA Europe Under-20 championship final game, Spanoulis sank two clutch free throws, with just 13 seconds remaining on the game clock, to clinch a win over the Spanish national junior team, and win the gold.[10][72]

Greek senior national team[edit]

Spanoulis also played with Greece's national team at the 2001 Mediterranean Games. He was a key member of the team for Greece during the tournament. Greece finished in second place in the tournament, winning the silver medal. He was a part of Greece's team that won the 2006 Stanković Continental Champions' Cup. Greece beat both Australia and Germany, whose team included NBA star Dirk Nowitzki, to win the tournament. Spanoulis led Greece in scoring during the tournament.

Spanoulis was named the MVP, of both the 2007 and 2009 friendly Acropolis Tournaments, in Athens, and he also won the same tournament 9 times with the Greek national team, in the years 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, and 2015.[73]

Spanoulis' retirement from the senior Greek national basketball team was announced on September 17, 2015, after EuroBasket 2015.[74] He ended his senior men's Greek national basketball team career, having been the leading scorer in every major tournament that he played in, from 2006 onward (9 tournaments in total: 2006 FIBA World Championship, EuroBasket 2007, 2008 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, 2008 Summer Olympics, EuroBasket 2009, 2010 FIBA World Championship, 2012 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, EuroBasket 2013, and EuroBasket 2015).

Summer Olympic Games[edit]

Spanoulis made his debut with the senior men's Greek national basketball team, for the first time, in the summer of 2004, when he was selected by his then head coach at Maroussi, Greek basketball legend, Panagiotis Giannakis, to be a member of the Greek squad during the 2004 Summer Olympics, which were held in Athens, Greece. Spanoulis was able to play in front of his home country's fans at Helliniko Olympic Arena, as Greece was the game's host country. Greece finished in 5th place in the tournament, losing to Manu Ginóbili and the eventual gold-medal winning Argentine national basketball team, 69–64, in the quarterfinals.[75] This was tied for the 2nd highest finish for Greece, in basketball at the Olympics, in its history. The 5th-place finish, making Greece one of the top 5 national teams in the world, was the beginning of Greece's great run in international tournaments during the 2000s (decade).

Spanoulis also played at the 2008 Summer Olympics, where he averaged 14.3 points per game, and at the 2012 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, where he averaged 19.3 points per game.

FIBA EuroBasket[edit]

At the EuroBasket 2005, Spanoulis was a key member of the Greek team[76] that won the EuroBasket and took home the gold medal.[77] It was just the second time in Greece's history, that the senior men's national basketball team won the gold medal at the EuroBasket, and the first time since EuroBasket 1987, when the legendary players Nikos Galis, Panagiotis Fasoulas, Fanis Christodoulou, and Panagiotis Giannakis, led Greece's national team.

Two years later, at the EuroBasket 2007, Spanoulis was again part of Greece's team.[78] Greece played the tournament shorthanded, as it was without key players Antonis Fotsis and Sofoklis Schortsanitis, and was not able to medal in the tournament. Greece finished in 4th place in the tournament,[79] losing in the semifinal game against the Spanish national basketball team, and its many star players, like Marc Gasol, Juan Carlos Navarro, José Calderón, Sergio Rodríguez, Jorge Garbajosa, Rudy Fernández, and Pau Gasol. Spanoulis was the game's leading scorer, with 24 points, and he also dished out 5 assists,[80] but Spain got the win, by a score of 82–77, over the depleted Greek squad. Spanoulis led the Greek team in scoring during the tournament, with a scoring average of 11.7 points per game.[81]

At the EuroBasket 2009, Spanoulis averaged 14.1 points per game, and led Greece to the bronze medal. He was named to the All-Tournament Team. At the EuroBasket 2013, Spanoulis was third in the tournament in scoring, averaging 16.7 points per game,[82] and he led Greece to a victory over the world's 2nd ranked team, Spain, during the tournament.[83] At EuroBasket 2015, Spanoulis led the Greek team, which had four players on it who had spent the 2014–15 season in the NBA (Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kosta Koufos, Nick Calathes, and Kostas Papanikolaou) in points per game and assists per game. Greece was ultimately defeated in the quarterfinals by Spain, by a score of 73-71, and finished the tournament in 5th place. After the tournament, Spanoulis announced his retirement from the Greek national team.[74] He was Greece's leading scorer in every major tournament that he played in from 2006 onward.

FIBA World Cup[edit]

Spanoulis was a member of the Greek team that competed at the 2006 FIBA World Championship,[84] and he helped to lead the Greek team to the silver medal, as they finished in second place in the tournament.[85] In the semifinal game against Team USA, he was the game's second-leading scorer, with 22 points (after Carmelo Anthony, who scored 27 for the USA), and along with his teammate, Theo Papaloukas, led Greece to victory over the USA, by a score of 101–95.[86] Spanoulis led the Greek national team in scoring during the 2006 World Championship, with an average of 11.7 points per game, and he also led the Greek team in free throw shooting percentage at 87.8%.[87]

Spanoulis averaged 13.7 points per game at the 2010 FIBA World Championship.[88]

Personal life[edit]

Fans have dubbed him V-Span and Kill Bill.[89] He is the first Greek-born player to play for the Houston Rockets, and he was the third Greek-born player to play in the NBA.[90] His basketball idol, and favorite player as a kid, was Michael Jordan.[91]

He has been friends with fellow basketball players like Roderick Blakney, Jake Tsakalidis, Shane Battier, John Lucas III, Tracy McGrady,[92] and Steve Novak.[93] He is very good friends with Theo Papaloukas, and is best friends with Nikos Zisis, and he was the best man at Zisis' wedding.[94] He is married to Miss Star Hellas 2006, Olympia Chopsonidou.[95]

Club career statistics[edit]

  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  PIR  Performance Index Rating
 Bold  Career high

Note: The EuroLeague is not the only competition in which the player participated for the team during the season. He also played in domestic competition, and regional competition if applicable.

Denotes seasons in which Spanoulis won the EuroLeague



2005–06 Panathinaikos 23 3 27.8 .534 .368 .780 2.0 3.1 1.4 .0 14.6 15.5
2007–08 20 5 27.8 .444 .355 .750 2.6 2.7 1.3 .0 11.3 11.1
2008–09 19 9 25.6 .413 .309 .879 2.4 3.5 1.2 .0 10.5 11.4
2009–10 14 6 25.3 .398 .277 .845 1.5 3.6 1.1 .0 10.3 9.7
2010–11 Olympiacos 20 17 29.5 .444 .347 .852 1.8 4.3 1.1 .1 14.2 14.3
2011–12 21 19 29.8 .479 .386 .827 2.0 4.0 .7 .1 16.7 16.0
2012–13 31 31 30.0 .397 .321 .782 2.2 5.5 .9 .0 14.7 15.1
2013–14 26 26 28.1 .430 .344 .738 2.0 4.6 .4 .0 15.1 13.0
2014–15 26 26 28.1 .396 .333 .759 1.8 5.5 .8 .1 14.4 14.4
2015–16 20 20 26.9 .318 .260 .706 1.5 5.4 .4 .0 11.2 8.6
2016–17 33 32 26.8 .396 .315 .759 1.7 6.1 .6 .0 12.6 11.9
2017–18 24 24 26.3 .396 .315 .817 1.5 5.6 .7 .0 14.0 11.9
Career 277 218 27.8 .419 .327 .788 1.9 4.6 .8 .0 13.5 12.9



Regular season[edit]

2006–07 Houston 31 0 8.8 .319 .172 .810 .7 .9 .2 .0 2.7
Career 31 0 8.8 .319 .172 .810 .7 .9 .2 .0 2.7


2007 Houston 1 0 3.0 .500 .000 1.000 1.0 1.0 .0 .0 4.0
Career 1 0 3.0 .500 .000 1.000 1.0 1.0 .0 .0 4.0

Greek national team career statistics[edit]


  GP Games played  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high
Tournament National Team GP MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2000 FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship Greece U-18 8 25.9 .579 .286 .786 1.1 1.9 .5 .0 10.1
2002 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship
Qualifying Round
Greece U-20 5 29.2 .545 .304 .533 3.4 4.4 1.4 .0 15.0
2002 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship 8 31.3 .467 .477 .875 3.1 5.5 .9 .0 16.0
2004 Summer Olympics Greece 6 11.0 .444 .500 .750 0.7 1.0 .3 .0 3.8
EuroBasket 2005 7 10.3 .227 .100 .600 1.1 0.3 .3 .0 2.4
2006 FIBA World Championship 9 27.2 .358 .262 .878 1.8 1.3 1.2 .0 11.7
EuroBasket 2007 9 26.1 .418 .303 .576 1.8 2.0 1.1 .0 11.7
2008 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament 4 24.0 .474 .400 .900 2.5 3.8 2.8 .0 12.8
2008 Summer Olympics 6 28.2 .531 .273 .632 3.0 3.0 1.3 .0 14.3
EuroBasket 2009 9 31.3 .458 .436 .829 2.7 4.2 1.4 .1 14.1
2010 FIBA World Championship 6 29.3 .520 .419 .810 1.0 2.3 1.2 .0 13.7
2012 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament 3 26.3 .613 .500 .619 2.7 5.7 0.3 .0 19.3
EuroBasket 2013 6 30.2 .439 .303 .780 3.3 2.5 0.7 .2 16.7
EuroBasket 2015 7 27.6 .411 .385 .727 2.3 5.3 0.3 .1 11.4

Awards and accomplishments[edit]

Pro career[edit]

Greek junior national team[edit]

Greek senior national team[edit]


Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Nicknames "Kill Bill" "V-Span"". 1982-07-08. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  2. ^ MVP: Most Vassilis Player.
  3. ^ a b Spanoulis named Balkan athlete of the year.
  4. ^ European Awards 2012 – Men Basketball.
  5. ^ a b, 2017-18 All-EuroLeague Second Team presented by 7DAYS.
  6. ^ "Euroleague official website, Final Four MVP: Vassilis Spanoulis, Panathinaikos". 2009-05-03. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  7. ^ "profile". 1982-08-07. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  8. ^ Spanoulis named bwin MVP of 2013 Final Four.
  9. ^ " profile". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g "Vassilis Spanoulis bio page". Archived from the original on 2012-01-19. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  11. ^ "Panathinaikos brings back Spanoulis – On-Court – Welcome to EUROLEAGUE BASKETBALL". 2007-08-19. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  12. ^ player profile info. Archived July 26, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  13. ^ "ROCKETS NOTES: Spanoulis draws Nash comparison | – Houston Chronicle". 2006-10-20. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  14. ^ Rockets Blast | MVN – a Houston Rockets blog " Blog Archive " Lewis signs with Magic; Spanoulis whines to Momma. Archived March 3, 2016, at the Wayback Machine.
  15. ^ a b Spanoulis says he won't return to Rockets – Houston Chronicle.
  16. ^ "Phantis Sports Club Forums -> 2005–2006 awards". 2006-06-15. Archived from the original on 2012-02-13. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  17. ^ EUROBASKET – Euroleague Men 2005–2006 Basketball, Teams, Scores, Stats, News, Standings, Pro Basketball. Archived May 17, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  18. ^ a b "Houston Rockets Sports Betting News MYSPORTSBOOK". Archived from the original on 2005-04-28. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  19. ^ a b "New owners insist Sonics will stay in Seattle". Deseret News (Salt Lake City). July 21, 2006.
  20. ^ Spanoulis, Vasilis. Archived October 29, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  21. ^ a b EUROLEAGUE AWARDS 2005–2006.,
  22. ^ a b Papaloukas Wins Close Vote to Become FIBA Europe Player of the Year.,
  23. ^ 火箭新控卫斯潘诺里斯:我是菜鸟 姚明是超级巨星 (in Chinese)
  24. ^ "Houston Rockets sign Vassilis Spanoulis – Rockets signed Vassilis Spanoulis". 2006-07-19. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  25. ^ "NBA Salaries – Houston Rockets". HoopsHype. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  26. ^ Guard Vassilis Spanoulis signs with Rockets., July 20, 2006
  27. ^ Pierce, Damien (2011-03-03). "ROCKETS: Rockets sign Greek guard". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  28. ^ Greece: Spanoulis Set For Take Off With Rockets.,
  29. ^ a b c "Rockets' Lindsey praises Spanoulis". 2006-01-19. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  30. ^ "Spanoulis' NBA career stats". Archived from the original on 2012-01-19. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  31. ^ JONATHAN FEIGEN, Copyright 2006 Houston Chronicle (2006-11-22). "Spanoulis getting chance in Rockets' rotation". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  32. ^ FRAN BLINEBURY, Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle (2007-01-23). "Spanoulis struggles with lack of playing time". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  33. ^ Spurs Acquire Vassilis Spanoulis., – July 12, 2007
  34. ^ Spurs acquire Spanoulis in trade with Rockets., July 12, 2007
  35. ^ "SPURS: Spurs Release Spanoulis". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  36. ^ Spanoulis insists his Rockets days over., July 5, 2007
  37. ^ "Coach Van Gundy didn't know me". Archived 2013-06-09 at the Wayback Machine.
  38. ^ Μπιούφορντ: "Παρακολουθούμε τους Πρίντεζη και Μιλουτίνοφ" (in Greek).
  39. ^ San Antonio Spurs General Manager R.C. Buford On Vassilis Spanoulis.
  40. ^ a b ΜΠΑΣΚΕΤ: V-Span...η επιστροφή. (in Greek)
  41. ^ "Spanoulis returns to Panathinaikos". 2009-05-29. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  42. ^ "Spanoulis Panathinaikos sign a lucrative contract". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  43. ^ Final Four MVP: Vassilis Spanoulis, Panathinaikos.
  44. ^ – Οι παλιοί MVP (in Greek).
  45. ^ Υψηλές αποδοχές (in Greek). Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  46. ^ Spanoulis named bwin MVP of 2013 Final Four.
  48. ^ Spanoulis honored with prestigious Giuseppe Sciacca Award.
  49. ^ European Awards 2013 – Men Basketball.
  50. ^ Spanoulis signs contract extension with Euroleague champions.
  51. ^ OLYMPIACOS, Spanoulis will seek three-peat.
  52. ^ O Herói e o Vilão de Olympiacos 86 x 69 Pinheiros, pelo Mundial de Clubes (in Portuguese).
  53. ^ Olympiacos bate Pinheiros e vence Copa Intercontinental (in Portuguese).
  54. ^ "2013-14 All-Euroleague First and Second Teams announced". Retrieved 9 May 2014.
  55. ^ "All-Euroleague First and Second Teams announced". Retrieved 8 May 2015.
  56. ^ Vassilis Spanoulis 3 Point Buzzer Beating Game Winner 2016 GBL Finals.
  57. ^ Vassilis "Big Shot" Spanoulis Clutch Time: 2016 GBL Finals Game 3 (11 PTS In Last 3:01).
  58. ^ Vassilis Spanoulis 2016 GBL Finals Game 4 Winner Over Dimitris Diamantidis.
  59. ^ Vassilis Spanoulis named Greek League MVP.
  60. ^ Ο Β. Σπανούλης TAGHeuer MVP της Basket League ΣΚΡΑΤΣ (in Greek).
  61. ^ Vassilis Spanoulis named MVP of the Greek Finals.
  62. ^ TAGHeuer MVP των τελικών ο Σπανούλης (in Greek).
  63. ^ Spanoulis, Olympiacos together through 2018.
  65. ^ Spanoulis becomes EuroLeague assists king.
  66. ^ Spanoulis at the top of the EuroLeague All-Time list of assists.
  67. ^ Spanoulis becomes top scorer in Greek League history as Olympiacos beats Panionios.
  68. ^ Ο Σπανούλης 1ος σκόρερ της Basket League (pics, infographics) (in Greek).
  69. ^ "2017-18 All-EuroLeague Second Team presented by 7DAYS". 10 May 2018. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  70. ^ (2 July 2018). "Olympiacos, Spanoulis sign on for ninth season together". EuroLeague. Retrieved 4 July 2018.
  71. ^ 2000 Under-18 European Championship. Archived 2008-04-28 at the Wayback Machine.
  72. ^ 2002 Under-20 European Championship. Archived April 25, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  73. ^ EUROBASKET – Greek Basketball, Teams, Scores, Stats, News, Standings, Pro Basketball. Archived September 29, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  74. ^ a b [1]
  75. ^ 2004 Olympics basketball results. Archived April 10, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  76. ^ Greece national team roster. Archived January 9, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  77. ^ Greece wins gold medal. Archived October 12, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  78. ^ Greece team profile and roster. Archived May 17, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  79. ^ final standings. Archived May 9, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  80. ^ Spain – Greece Eurobasket 2007 semi-final box score. Archived July 26, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  81. ^ Greece / Accumulated Statistics. Archived 2008-01-04 at the Wayback Machine.,
  82. ^ STATISTICAL LEADERS – PLAYERS Points Per Game. Archived 2013-09-22 at the Wayback Machine.
  83. ^ Greek Plan Stuns Spain. Archived 2013-10-04 at the Wayback Machine.
  84. ^ "2006 World Championship Greece roster". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  85. ^ Pau Gasol (Esp) (2006-08-29). "2006 World Championship final standings list". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  86. ^ "2006 World Championship Greece – USA box score". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  87. ^ "Vasileios Spanoulis – Player Stats". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  88. ^ Greece 7 – Vasileios Spanoulis Player Profile.
  89. ^ "Vassilis Spanoulis, Greece ...player profiles by Interbasket". 1982-07-08. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  90. ^ Players Born in Greece – Archived September 7, 2015, at the Wayback Machine.
  91. ^ "Spanoulis interview". 2009-04-27. Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  92. ^ JONATHAN FEIGEN, Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle (2007-10-11). "ROCKETS NOTES: Spanoulis just a memory | – Houston Chronicle". Retrieved 2012-04-24.
  93. ^ JS Online:Todd Rosiak: Marquette Basketball.[dead link]
  94. ^ Νίκος Ζήσης & Φανή Σκουφή (in Greek). Archived 2013-11-04 at the Wayback Machine.
  95. ^ Spanoulis interview. Archived 2013-11-04 at the Wayback Machine.
  97. ^ Vassilis Spanoulis.
  98. ^ Vasileios SPANOULIS (GRE) participated in 29 FIBA / FIBA Zones events.
  99. ^ ", Spanoulis named Balkan athlete of the year". 2009-12-23. Retrieved 2012-04-24.

External links[edit]