Greek big man Ioannis Bourousis announced on Friday his retirement from active basketball after 20 years of career. Bourousis started his pro career in AEK Athens in 2001 and played up to last season, when he joined Peristeri of his native Greece. In between, Bourousis became one of the best big men in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague of the last two decades, and his highlight was a EuroLeague title with Real Madrid in 2015. He was also named to the All-EuroLeague First Team in 2009 and 2016. In fact, 2015-16 was probably his most successful season at an individual level. Playing with Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz, he was EuroLeague MVP of the Month for March of 2016 as he also led the team to its first EuroLeague Final Four in eight seasons. That same season he was also named MVP of the Spanish League and was included in the All-Spanish League First Team.
During his career Bourousis also played with FC Barcelona, Olympiacos Piraeus, AX Armani Excange Milan, Panathinaikos OPAP Athens and Herbalife Gran Canaria. He spent two seasons also in China with the Zhejiang Lions from 2017 to 2019. Bourousis also won two Greek League titles, 3 Greek Cup titles, two Spanish King's Cup titles and two Spanish SuperCup titles. He was also named to the All-Greek League First time on three occasions in 2008, 2009 and 2011. Also a member of the Greek national team, Bourousis won a EuroBasket gold in 2005 and a bronze in 2009.
Bourousis ranks 10th overall in EuroLeague games played, with a total 284. In those he scored 2,408 points (24th), pulled 1,603 rebounds (3rd), had 194 blocks (6th) and made 726 2-point shots (18th).
Bourusis wrote a message in Greek to all his fans in his personal Instagram account:
"All good things come to an end, no matter how much one wants to accept it. After 21 years in which I gave my soul in the stadiums, it is time to say my own goodbyes.
"The small child from Karditsa lived more than he could dream of, through his journey with the "orange goddess". Great joys, titles and distinctions, recognition and acceptance by the elite of the sport in Europe, but also disappointments, because they are also part of life.
"A full career that I could not dream of starting playing basketball in my hometown.
"All these years in my sports journey I have had the joy and the honor to wear the jersey of top teams in Europe and that makes me proud."