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The Cypriots abroad - First Part

The Cypriots abroad - First Part

The worst season for the Cyprus Basketball (since only six teams will participate in the First division league as another one historic team, the team from Agios Dometios ENAD will follow the path that Achilleas Kaimakli followed a couple of years ago, while Omonoia Nicosia which was relegated will not be able to play in the first division either. The team simply can't afford the financial burden and will participate in the B' Division, which needs not actual budgets as it is a semi-amateur division and needs very low budget to handle the season.

On the other hand, in the remaining six teams which will participate in the fist division at least two of them will have a very low budget and it is obvious that they will simply participate in the division to sum up the league.

Having stated all that, there is a phenomenon for the local players since due to the crisis the Cypriot players and against all odds are doing much better in terms of playing abroad and mostly in the Greek league. So in the season 2013-2014 there is a number which can consider a historic record in regards to Cypriot players abroad as not less than 20 players will be playing in non Cypriot leagues, with the Greek one being the favorite for the players from Cyprus.

In more details this coming season we will have more than 15 players playing abroad, with some of them simply continue their career in the Greek league while some others just got trasnferd from the Cyprus league to the Greek one.

 These players are as follows (note in the list there are at least another 10 players plying abroad but in lower leagues)


Antreas Christodoulou (197-SF-95) signed a new 5 years contract with Olympiakos Piraeus being only the third player (after the legendary Kozakis and Mirallais) in the Reds of Piraeus. This consider also the greatest transfer ever for a Cypriot player considering the ranking of Olympiakos which is at the top of Europe and Andreas is officially a member of this top rated team.

Aleksandros Vezenkov (203-F-95) renewed his contract for another four years with the team of Aris Thessaloniki’s, in A1 Greek league. Aleksandros born in Cyprus from Bulgarian parents but was brought up in the Academies of APOEL before leaving at the age of 15 to the team of Aris Thessaloniki where he played for the next three years. This season and upon the end of his contract while he had to select between the Xavier of NCAA and Olympiakos Piraeus he preferred to stay in the “Safety” of Aris as he trusts totally Coach Angelou since he will have a guarantee time in the court in the 100% Greek team of Aris, the innovative project of the Greek league.

Prodromos Nikolaidis (201-F-78) is very close to continue his career in Trikala in A1 Greek league since he is still negotiating but is quite close to the deal. There are not any official agreements yet it is strongly believed that in the next few weeks he will sign his new contract in either Trikala or his home birthplace Kavala in A2.

Anthony King (206-F/C-85, college: Miami, FL) will continue his career for a third consecutive season with Artland Dragons in Germany. Anthony who has the Cypriot passport since 2011 is among the steadiest American born players in the German league, it is not coincidence that he is among the few players who actually continues to renew his contract every year in much better financial terms.

Giannis Yiannaras (181-G-99) joined forces with PAOK Thessaloniki academies coming from the academies of Keravnos Strovolou. Giannis under the coaching of his father last season he played in the Men’s team of Keravnos becoming the younger player ever to play even for short time in the Men’s team.

Nikolaos Stylianou agreed financial terms with Koroivos in the A2 league after his solid season in Kavala and in the A1 league. It is worth mentioned that Koroivos is among the top favorite teams to win the promotion in A1 this coming season, so Nikolas transfer can easily characterize successful. Stylianou was closed to sign in Coach Flevarakis’s, Trikala but finally there was not any deal between the two parties so he decided to continue his career in Koroivos and he will be obviously among the top performers of the team (if not the league) since he already showed his moods from the early pre-season friendly games..

Christopher Razis (194-PG-89) agreed financial terms with OFI Crete in the A2 league and after his two years not so successful experience in the German league will now try to prove his quality and his talent in the Greek A2 league, being actually a rookie in the Greek courts. Let’s not forget that last year in ENAD he had a very productive season and was among the few stand outs in the very weak team of ENAD.

Rafael Eleftheriou (200-G-94) agreed financial terms (initially) with the team Ikaroi Serron in A2 league, but due to problems with the Bosman position the Serres team preferred the Hungarian center Gyorgi Kinder, so Rafael after being tested in Pagrati, he finally ended up with the team of Aris Thessaloniki where he will be playing initially for the cadets and then after his papers (to become Greek) will finish he will be able to play for the men’s team too.  Rafael is a talented player and was among the top performers in Mantoulidis last season and together with Christodoulou did the difference and brought their team to the second division.

Andreas Sizopoulos (192-G-83) agreed financial terms with Filippos Veroias in the A2 league after his not so successful pass from AGOR in the A1 league last season where unfortunately he had no real time in the court as he haven’t been trusted nor from Coach Koufos neither Yiaples who replaced him later on. Andreas is among the top performers in the A2 leagues for nearly a decade and he is expected to help the newcomers in the A2 as he can offer not only points but good organizational skills too plus his experience all these years in the A2 courts.

 

The international guard Aristides Koronidis (188-PG-82) agreed financial terms with Polis Kallitheas and will continue his career after one year off courts, in the B’ Division league. Aris Koronidis changed clubs in the season 2011-2012 and as of August 2012 he became a member of the A2 team of Agia Paraskevi where unfortunately was not able to play more than a couple of friendly games since he got seriously injured and lost the rest of the period in total. Koronidis had a solid season with Ermis Perama the year before where he actually ended the season 2010-2011 with double digits 12 points per game in all 28 games and ended in the 5th place of the league in the assists. Koronidis other than his fast season in PAOK couldn’t do the career he expected to do in the A1 courts. In this coming season and after one year off the courts he decided to take a back step in his career and agreed financial terms with the Second Division team Polis Kallitheas, this will be the very first time in his career that will be playing in the B’ Division as his absence of last season is “forcing” him to play in a lower division where he will have all the time to become better and at the same time will have some solid time in the court which will be crucial for his possible comeback in the bigger divisions. Let’s not forget that he is 32 now..

Petros Stylianou (188-G-87, college: Collin County CC), Nikolas brother will continue his career after MENT, in Zefyros of the C' Division a newcomer team in the division. Petros had a solid season in the team of MENT last season even though he could help the team to remain in the division.

Roberto Alexander Mantovani (200-F-94) is very close to a couple of teams but has not yet decided as he will combine basketball with his studies. He will definitely continue his basketball career abroad

Viktoras Ieronymidis (200-G/F-95) continues his career in the NCAA 1 with Fordham university and he becomes officially the first ever Cypriot to play in the first division of NCAA, while and at the same time, this rookie season for the young talented Cypriot is not expected to get crucial time in the court this season. Viktoras name played also a year ago for Panathinaikos academies but never proceeded as there was a difference in the financial. Viktoras had a wonderful tournament this summer with the Cyprus NT U20 as he was among the stand outs of the National Team

Orestis Matsas (184-G-93) will continue his career in Polis Kallitheas, as he moved from APOP to the Greek team. Orestis consider among the most talented players from Pafos and he is expected to upgrade both his technique and his ability to play better basketball. In Polis he will find his country-mate Aristidis Koronidis

Christos Loizidis (207-C-91) agreed financial terms with Aetos Kallitheas in the B’ League, before that he was very close to sign with Peristeri where he trained for more than a week and was tested positively but the plans changed in the last minute and he will continue his career in the North Hellas, with Aetos Kallitheas.

Constantinos Pilakoutas (192-G/F-91) of ENAD will continue his career in Makedonikos and the C' Division of Greece as he was doing so last season too.

Ioannis Stefanidis will continue his career in Eleftheroupolis Kavalas in the third division league. Ioannis has stabilized his career in Kavala.

Nasios Kyriakou will continue his career in the English league and the team Manchester Giants after a not so successful season with Iraklis Thessaloniki in the Second Division of the Greek league, even though Iraklis gain its promotion in the A2, Nasios was not among the key players of the Thessaloniki team. In Manchester he will also combine his studies with the basketball. Manchester Giants was the team of the unforgotten Cypriot of Diaspora Charis Charalmpous who unfortunately died 4 years ago at the age of 20.

Manolis Pratsinis after his solid season in the Swiss league with the jersey of Kuesnacht-Erlenbach, where he actually succeeded his best season ever since his arrival in Switzerland, seven years ago, being among the top three rebounders of the division, he will continue his career in the same team but due to his faculty (he studies to become a Doctor) his time this season will not be as last season’s since he will focus in his universities’ subjects.

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Anagennisi Germasogeias vs. ETHA Engomis
84-92
Petrolina A.E.K. Larnakas vs. Keravnos Strovolou
59-48
CytaVision APOEL vs. Apollon BC
82-65
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102-82
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Positions - Mens Division A

Team W/L P
1. Petrolina A.E.K. Larnakas 13/2 28
2. Keravnos Strovolou 12/3 27
3. CytaVision APOEL 10/5 25
4. Apollon BC 9/6 24
5. ETHA Engomis 9/6 24
6. Enosis Neon Paralimniou 5/10 20
7. Kapatsos Omonoia Nicosia 2/13 17
8. Anagennisi Germasogeias 0/15 15
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