Blatt hailed Spanoulis after first EuroLeague win together

Oct 14, 2018 by Print
Blatt hailed Spanoulis after first EuroLeague win together

Another game, another highlight reel play. It was business as usual for Vassilis Spanoulis on Friday night, with the Olympiacos Piraeus legend converting a magnificent deep three on the half-time buzzer to help lift his team towards a season-opening road victory over Khimki Moscow Region.

After the game, new Reds coach David Blatt confirmed that Spanoulis – now aged 36 – still has a huge role to play this season. But he also noted that other players will be expected to carry their share of the burden.

Spanoulis was on the floor for 23:42 on Friday night, the second-highest of all Olympiacos players (trailing only Janis Timma), but significantly down on his average from last season of 26:19.

"The great thing about coaching Billy is the person that he is. He understands what's needed for the team," Blatt explained after the game.

"This is a youthful team and I don't think his role has changed in terms of him being our leader and our leading player. But it has in terms of how we need to share responsibility for what happens on the floor, not only putting it on his shoulders and asking him to do things that perhaps aren't consistent with his long years of service.

"Because of the person that he is and his willingness to play winning basketball and lift the other guys, you'll see some different things from years past. But not because he's any less efficient or effective or great. He's one of the true all-time greats of European basketball and he's deserving of that title."