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The DraftExpress Daily
       
  Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Spanoulis giving Rockets reason for optimism?
By Jonathan Givony

Written href=/profile//> by href=/profile//> Dimitris href=/profile//> Ritsonis

Outside href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> NCAA href=/profile//> final href=/profile//> four href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> NBA href=/profile//> draft href=/profile//> excitement href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> previous href=/profile//> weeks, href=/profile//> comes href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> point href=/profile//> guard href=/profile//> which href=/profile//> has href=/profile//> been href=/profile//> mentioned href=/profile//> again href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> DraftCity href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> has href=/profile//> been href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> product href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> hard href=/profile//> work href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> absolute href=/profile//> belief href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> improvement href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> every href=/profile//> talent. href=/profile//> It href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> captain href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> Maroussi, href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> second href=/profile//> best href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Greek href=/profile//> A1, href=/profile//> Vassilis href=/profile//> Spanoulis. href=/profile//> The href=/profile//> 22-year href=/profile//> old href=/profile//> point href=/profile//> guard, href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> player href=/profile//> whom href=/profile//> nobody href=/profile//> outside href=/profile//> Greece href=/profile//> had href=/profile//> even href=/profile//> heard href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> before href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> year's href=/profile//> NBA href=/profile//> Draft. href=/profile//>

Spanoulis, href=/profile//> an href=/profile//> old href=/profile//> school href=/profile//> PG, href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> player href=/profile//> with href=/profile//> great href=/profile//> court href=/profile//> vision href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> very href=/profile//> good href=/profile//> knowledge href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> basketball href=/profile//> fundamentals href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> not href=/profile//> what href=/profile//> you href=/profile//> would href=/profile//> call href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> "great href=/profile//> talent". href=/profile//> He href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> not href=/profile//> particularly href=/profile//> athletic href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> not href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> fastest href=/profile//> player href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> world. href=/profile//> But href=/profile//> that's href=/profile//> where href=/profile//> "natural" href=/profile//> drawbacks href=/profile//> end. href=/profile//> Having href=/profile//> been href=/profile//> completely href=/profile//> unknown href=/profile//> before href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> beginning href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> season href=/profile//> (2003-2004), href=/profile//> Spanoulis href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> voted href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> captain href=/profile//> by href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> teammates href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> Maroussi, href=/profile//> normally href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> 6th-10th href=/profile//> best href=/profile//> Greek href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> before href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> year. href=/profile//>

Starting href=/profile//> as href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> team's href=/profile//> 6th href=/profile//> man, href=/profile//> Spanoulis href=/profile//> had href=/profile//> an href=/profile//> exciting href=/profile//> year href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> season href=/profile//> averaging href=/profile//> more href=/profile//> or href=/profile//> less href=/profile//> 13.0 href=/profile//> ppg, href=/profile//> 1.0 href=/profile//> spg href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> 4.0 href=/profile//> apg href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> help href=/profile//> Maroussi href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> an href=/profile//> exciting href=/profile//> 10-0 href=/profile//> run href=/profile//> early href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> season href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> first href=/profile//> place href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> league href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> most href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> year, href=/profile//> losing href=/profile//> it href=/profile//> only href=/profile//> two href=/profile//> weeks href=/profile//> before href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> end href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> regular href=/profile//> season, href=/profile//> when href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> finished href=/profile//> 2nd href=/profile//> behind href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> 3-time href=/profile//> European href=/profile//> Champions href=/profile//> Panathinaikos. href=/profile//> Spanoulis href=/profile//> became href=/profile//> famous href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> Greece href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> strong href=/profile//> defensive href=/profile//> game, href=/profile//> nice href=/profile//> slashing href=/profile//> abilities href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> very href=/profile//> strong, href=/profile//> demanding href=/profile//> character. href=/profile//> His href=/profile//> buzzer-beating href=/profile//> abilities href=/profile//> were href=/profile//> memorable href=/profile//> too. href=/profile//> He href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> leader href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> making. href=/profile//>

The href=/profile//> surprising href=/profile//> Maroussi href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> went href=/profile//> undefeated href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> playoffs, href=/profile//> losing href=/profile//> only href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> finals href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> Panathinaikos, href=/profile//> but href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> not href=/profile//> able href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> qualify href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> Euroleague, href=/profile//> as href=/profile//> ULEB href=/profile//> has href=/profile//> two href=/profile//> more href=/profile//> contracts href=/profile//> with href=/profile//> other href=/profile//> teams href=/profile//> (Olympiakos, href=/profile//> AEK) href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> thus, href=/profile//> only href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Champions href=/profile//> make href=/profile//> it href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> Euroleague. href=/profile//> Alongside href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> domestic href=/profile//> league href=/profile//> performance, href=/profile//> Spanoulis href=/profile//> had href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> spectacular href=/profile//> FIBA href=/profile//> Europe href=/profile//> League href=/profile//> semifinal href=/profile//> win href=/profile//> against href=/profile//> Hapoel href=/profile//> Tel href=/profile//> Aviv, href=/profile//> where href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> scored href=/profile//> 26 href=/profile//> points href=/profile//> along href=/profile//> with href=/profile//> 5 href=/profile//> assists. href=/profile//> Spanoulis' href=/profile//> good href=/profile//> momentum href=/profile//> continued href=/profile//> into href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> summer, href=/profile//> as href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> selected href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> NBA href=/profile//> Draft href=/profile//> (at href=/profile//> #50 href=/profile//> by href=/profile//> Dallas, href=/profile//> which href=/profile//> traded href=/profile//> him href=/profile//> immediately href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> Houston) href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> also href=/profile//> called href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> National href=/profile//> Team href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> Greece href=/profile//> which href=/profile//> finished href=/profile//> 5th href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Olympic href=/profile//> tournament. href=/profile//>

Spanoulis href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> more href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> spectator href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Olympics, href=/profile//> as href=/profile//> Greece's href=/profile//> roster href=/profile//> includes href=/profile//> some href=/profile//> really href=/profile//> great href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> experienced href=/profile//> point href=/profile//> guards. href=/profile//> However, href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> must href=/profile//> have href=/profile//> learned href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> lot href=/profile//> by href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> competitiveness href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Athens href=/profile//> Olympics, href=/profile//> as href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> season href=/profile//> started href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> very href=/profile//> strong href=/profile//> way... href=/profile//>

The href=/profile//> A1 href=/profile//> proved href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> be href=/profile//> more href=/profile//> competitive href=/profile//> than href=/profile//> anyone href=/profile//> would href=/profile//> expect, href=/profile//> but href=/profile//> Maroussi, href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> Cinderella href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> year, href=/profile//> started href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> season href=/profile//> strongly, href=/profile//> despite href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> very href=/profile//> tough href=/profile//> schedule href=/profile//> early href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> year. href=/profile//> He href=/profile//> had href=/profile//> 24 href=/profile//> points href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> buzzer href=/profile//> beating href=/profile//> trey href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> an href=/profile//> 90-92 href=/profile//> away href=/profile//> win href=/profile//> over href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Euroleague href=/profile//> top-16 href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> AEK, href=/profile//> 22 href=/profile//> points href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> 4 href=/profile//> assists href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> 89-87 href=/profile//> win href=/profile//> over href=/profile//> Aris href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> 13 href=/profile//> points, href=/profile//> 6 href=/profile//> assists href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> 4 href=/profile//> steals href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> spectacular href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> very href=/profile//> important href=/profile//> 75-55 href=/profile//> win href=/profile//> over href=/profile//> top-spot href=/profile//> rivals href=/profile//> Panathinaikos, href=/profile//> two href=/profile//> days href=/profile//> ago. href=/profile//> In href=/profile//> all href=/profile//> these href=/profile//> games, href=/profile//> Spanoulis href=/profile//> was href=/profile//> voted href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> MVP href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> match href=/profile//> day, href=/profile//> something href=/profile//> that href=/profile//> makes href=/profile//> him href=/profile//> now href=/profile//> one href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> top href=/profile//> (if href=/profile//> not href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> main) href=/profile//> favorite href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> MVP href=/profile//> of href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> regular href=/profile//> season.
href=/profile//>
Spanoulis href=/profile//> has href=/profile//> improved href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> game href=/profile//> decisively href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> this href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> proved href=/profile//> by href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> additional href=/profile//> shots href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> taking href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> making href=/profile//> every href=/profile//> game. href=/profile//> Having href=/profile//> shot href=/profile//> more href=/profile//> than href=/profile//> any href=/profile//> other href=/profile//> Maroussi href=/profile//> player, href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> now href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> team's href=/profile//> first href=/profile//> option, href=/profile//> after href=/profile//> being href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> third href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> year. href=/profile//> He href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> averaging href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> good href=/profile//> 15.0 href=/profile//> ppg href=/profile//> (shooting href=/profile//> 44% href=/profile//> from href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> field, href=/profile//> 41% href=/profile//> from href=/profile//> downtown href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> 80% href=/profile//> from href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> free href=/profile//> throw href=/profile//> line) href=/profile//> 1.0 href=/profile//> spg href=/profile//> and href=/profile//> 4.0 href=/profile//> apg, href=/profile//> while href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> "lock" href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> national href=/profile//> team href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> this href=/profile//> summer's href=/profile//> Eurobasket. href=/profile//> According href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> information href=/profile//> from href=/profile//> his href=/profile//> team, href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> will href=/profile//> go href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Houston href=/profile//> Rockets href=/profile//> only href=/profile//> if href=/profile//> he href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> given href=/profile//> 10-15 href=/profile//> minutes href=/profile//> per href=/profile//> game, href=/profile//> while href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Rockets href=/profile//> have href=/profile//> been href=/profile//> sending href=/profile//> him href=/profile//> tapes href=/profile//> all href=/profile//> year, href=/profile//> looking href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> him href=/profile//> to href=/profile//> participate href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> their href=/profile//> summer href=/profile//> camp href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> a href=/profile//> few href=/profile//> months. href=/profile//>

It href=/profile//> seems href=/profile//> as href=/profile//> everything href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> going href=/profile//> well href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> 6-4 href=/profile//> PG, href=/profile//> who href=/profile//> has href=/profile//> also href=/profile//> said href=/profile//> that href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> only href=/profile//> reason href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> not href=/profile//> playing href=/profile//> in href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> NBA href=/profile//> is href=/profile//> qualifying href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> the href=/profile//> Euroleague. href=/profile//> Something href=/profile//> that href=/profile//> doesn't href=/profile//> look href=/profile//> impossible href=/profile//> for href=/profile//> Maroussi href=/profile//> after href=/profile//> last href=/profile//> Sunday's href=/profile//> game.

 
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