It’s an ordinary Thursday morning in Syntagma Square, the heart of Athens. The fathers of the Greek nation begin to arrive to the Parliament across the street in their designer suits and flashy cars. The Parliament Guards in their traditional costumes perform their usual changes for tourists to see and take pictures. Lots of people are flocking out of the Syntagma subway station, the biggest in Athens. And in the place where the gigantic Christmas tree stands during the holidays season, a paradise of hoops and kids in shorts all over the place. What is going on?
“We have transformed the square to a basketball playground to celebrate the Euroleague Final Four,” former Panionios player Paschalis Seretis, who is responsible for this edition of the Euroleague 3x3 Streetball tournament, said. And the kids on the floor at Syntagma Square are more than just players, they're devoted Euroleague fans as well. “Panathinaikos will win it all, Alvertis will lift his fourth on Sunday,” Giorgos said after lifting his team to a preliminary round win.
The events have attracted boys and girls of all ages from far and near. While most of the participants are from Athens and the surrounding areas, Fynn, a 19-year-old, is from Germany. “We’re not here for the Final Four, but we’ll watch it on TV. And we also may play some 3-on-3 if we find a Greek team thinking they can beat us!” The show-stopper on Thursday came as a pair of Final Four players wandered upon the scene. Fred House and Jesus Cilla of Tau Ceramica took a stroll in the city center and found themselves at the streetball event. If the participants in the countless events going on at the time needed any motivation, here was their chance, with the real pros nearby. And they didn't disappoint, as the action remained high till dusk on these baskets.