The Greek Men’s Basketball Team’s victory over Latvia in their final game of the FIBA Eurobakset 2015 marked the end of an era, as Vassilis Spanoulis announced his retirement from the Greek National Team.
“I am proud,” Spanoulis said after the game with Latvia. “I am emotionally charged right now because I have been with the national team since I was 17. This is how an athlete’s life is. I believe it is the right time for me to go and for the rest of the guys to play. There is a lot of talent here and we will be with them,” he said.
“Kill Bill”, as he is affectionately known, played 144 games for the Greek Men’s Basketball team, with a 10.21 points per game average and has won medals in three major tournaments.
The 33 year old point guard helped Greece win the FIBA Eurobasket in 2005, and a year later helped them reach the final in the 2006 FIBA World Championship, where Greece lost to Spain. His last success, in a major international tournament, wearing his Greek jersey was at the FIBA Eurobasket in 2009 when Greece claimed third place.
Spanoulis has been involved with the Greek national teams since 1999 when he was 17 years old. At 18, he was a part of the team that won the FIBA Under-18 European Championship and two years later he won the 2002 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championships.
He will be sorely missed.