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<  Yao's teammates and coaches  ~  Vassilis Spanoulis: Yao Ming is My Idol !

PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2006 4:37 am
User avatarPosts: 58994Location: Hong Kong/ChinaJoined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 5:13 am
Match photos of Vassalis Spanoulis in the opening match with Australia......

Results not yet known, but a fight almost broke out between the 2 teams, involving the fiery Andrew Bogut of Australia.

Please Click Here For More Photos










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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2006 10:20 am
User avatarPosts: 4156Location: Welcome to Ca|i Ca|i!!!!!!!Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2003 2:22 pm
pryuen wrote:
Match photos of Vassalis Spanoulis in the opening match with Australia......


Ouch! sprained ankle

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:45 pm
User avatarPosts: 1537Location: AZJoined: Fri Jan 16, 2004 10:54 am
I think Pryuen is secretly working on his PH.D in YaoMingMania

pryuen wrote:

A short interview of Vassilis Spanoulis in Nanjing.

Was he only polite to say that Yao Ming is his idol, just because he was in China talking to Chinese reporters ?


Even though his name has been mentioned numerous time, just like the Greek national team, no one was familiar to who was Vassilis Spanoulis. So after checking from some of the accompanying personnel of the Greek national team, the reporter finally confirmed that the player with a trendy sunglasses was Vassilis Spanoulis. So as the newly joined member of the Houston Rockets for the new season, this 23-year-old point guard has all of a sudden become the box office drawing star of the Greek national team. However, to the reporters, Spanoulis appeared to be pretty amiable. Therefore, in the lobby of the Nanjing Grand Hotel, while waiting for the arrival of luggages, Spanoulis, this mysterious new team mate of Yao Ming, received the following interview.

Spanoulis was discussing with his team mates about what they saw and heard on their way from Shanghai to Nanjing when the reporter raised the request for an interview. So the opening remarks from Spanoulis was: "(Prior to my arrival), I knew China is a very large country. Now that I am here, I've discovered that China is also a very beautiful country."

So after exchanging some casual chats with each other, the discussion between Spanoulis and the reporter was back to basketball. "Now that you have joined and become part of NBA, how do you feel?"

"I have dreamed for this contract for the last 2 years."

Spanoulis told the reporter that he had craved to compete in NBA 2 years ago when Houston Rockets acquired the right of him from Dallas Mavericks in 2004. But to his vast disappointment, the Houston Rockets decided to leave him in Europe to play in the Euro League. "To tell you the truth, I was pretty depressed at that time. But now my dream has finally realized."

"So do you know much about the Houston Rockets ?"

Regarding this, Spanoulis indicated: "Let me put it this way. Even though I played in Europe, I stayed close to NBA, and particularly, the Houston Rockets. The Rockets did not have good results this previous season, but I don't think this truely reflects their true strength. It was mainly because of injuries and sicknesses, and bad luck too. In my mind the Houston Rockets should be a championship team, as we have 2 super stars in Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming."

As Spanoulis casually menitoned Yao Ming, the reporter just took advantage of the opportunity to press in with a question which he had prepared well in advance: "So have you watched Yao Ming in action ?"

"Of course, I have" Spanoulis responded affirmatively. "Prior to the 2002 draft, I have already watched him play. And because he is the first ever international player in the NBA history that got No. 1 draft, he has been the inspiration for us, the international players. Therefore I have always followed his games."

"So can you tell us what is your impression of Yao Ming ?"

"Oh, I have never met him before. All my impression and understanding of him is just entirely from what I saw of him on the court. I thought he is an extremely outstanding player, and he has become a very well-known centre in NBA. In my eyes, he is absolutely a super star. I adore him very much."

"Although you have already become his team mate, it looks like you have not met him before. So do you anticipate meeting him this time round?"

Upon hearing this question, Spanoulis scratched his head, and said: "Of course, just like that I want to meet each of my Houston Rockets' team mate." Then Spanoulis immediately supplemented to what he said: "But I surely don't want to meet him on the court this time round. I don't want to play against him prior to us becoming team mates. He is my idol."

Viewed as one of the fastest rising point guards in Europe in the past 2 years, Spanoulis averaged 14.5 points per game, 3.1 assists per game, and 1.4 steals per game in the Greek league in the previous season; his field goal percentage and 3-pointer percentage were 61.7% and 36.7% respectively. Therefore he is widely viewed by the the general fans to be the effective prescription to resolve the current sluggish back court problem of the Houston Rockets. Some fans even called him "the European Kobe".

When the reporter told Spanoulis about his new nick name, the shy Spanoulis, all red in his face, just muttered: "This is too exaggerated, just far too exaggerated." After calming down, Spanoulis just indicated very modestly that he was very happy to be elevated to the same altitude as Kobe Bryant. "Kobe is a great player, and I am just a rookie of NBA. I feel that I have yet to earn that nick name. Maybe I played pretty well (in Europe) these 2 years. But I know deep down inside my future role in the Houston Rockets. The Houston Rockets have many good players. My job is to make them better. I only hope my joining will bring new impetus to the Rockets, and better still, a little bit more of luck." Spanoulis smiled broadly.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2006 2:33 pm
User avatarPosts: 10633Location: PhillyJoined: Sat Apr 02, 2005 8:03 am
HarmLess wrote:
SirRebus wrote:
Thanks pryuen as always. I head that van dumby isn't too fond of him though, but I do hope he will get teh minutes to prove himself.

BTW, the guy in the blue shirt behind them has a haircut that's so 90's (parted hair down center)... lol.

LMAO! That's a woman! :lol:

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 5:45 am
User avatarPosts: 58994Location: Hong Kong/ChinaJoined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 5:13 am

The following is an interview of Vassilis Spanoulis by Basketball Pioneer a few days ago. It just appeared today on

Quote: ... 6003.shtml

As soon as Vasalis Spanoulis arrives into China, he immediately becomes the focal attraction of the fans; actually debates about him has already started ever since the Houston Rockets announced recruiting him to its roster for the new season.

Chinese basketball fans are lucky, as they are the first to see Spanoulis in action. Yet after a game, very many people start to worry whether this young lad with average body conditions and mediocre performance can really be making a difference to the Houston Rockets in the new season. But it looks like Spanoulis is full of self confidence. He said: "I understand about team basketball better". Even though Spanoulis failed to leave a deep impression in the Chinese fans' mind in his very first debut here in China, he does seem to be a serious contender as the back up point guard for the Rockets; at least body wise, he is much stronger than the young John Lucas III.

Basketball Pioneer: Vassilis, is Yao Ming the first Houston Rockets team mate that you met ?

Spanoulis: Right. I am very happy to be able to be in China to prepare for the World Championship, and have this opportunity to meet Yao Ming.

Basketball Pioneer: What do you think of him ?

Spanoulis: I know he is very tall. Yet, I was sort of shocked when I first saw him; he is so much taller (than I thought). I often saw him on the television. Now that I met him for the very first time in person, I am very happy. Moreover, he looks like so genial and cordial. I just said it to myself...hey he will be my future team mate.

Basketball Pioneer: We knew that you met him here in Nanjing on the training court. So what did you two chat about ?

Spanoulis: We just mutually exchanged our greetings. Then he briefly introduced to me life in Houston, and also something about the Houston Rockets. In fact, we did not have much time to sit down to chat. He just wished me well there in Houston.

Basketball Pioneer: Have you ever been to Houston ?

Spanoulis: No, never been there. I have only heard some introduction about Houston, its weather and daily life.

Basketball Pioneer: So when you were in Europe, did you maintain frequent contact with the Houston Rockets?

Spanoulis: Yes, I frequently talked with the team manager over phone. We talked about plans about my development; we've done this for the past few years.

Basketball Pioneer: So can you watch games of the Houston Rockets in Europe live on TV ?

Spanoulis: The Houston Rockets sent me many video tapes of their games. They want me to be fully aware of the changes taken place in the team unceasingly.

Basketball Pioneer: Were the tape full games or edited clippage?

Spanoulis: They were not the full games; they only edited (and sent me) those that they needed me to pay attention to.

Basketball Pioneer: So after watching so many of their games from the video tapes, what is your impression about the Houston Rockets?

Spanoulis: The Houston Rockets is a strong team. Their defense is very good. They have a lot of extremely talented players. I am extremely happy to be able to be one of them.

Basketball Pioneer: So do you see any deficiencies in the Houston Rockets?

Spanoulis: I don't. (I only think) as far as our Rockets is concerned, health (of the players) is the most important.

Basketball Pioneer: How much do you know about your future Head Coach Jeff Van Gundy?

Spanoulis: I know very little about him. I only know that he is an extremely good coach, and he places strong emphasis in defense, and he is very very tough and stern. I did not hear alot about him.

Basketball Pioneer: As far as we know, Jeff Van Gundy always thought that you are not yet ready for NBA. So did you ever talk this over with him over the phone?

Spanoulis: He called me once; he told me that it won't be easy to adapt to a new kind of basketball; he told me that I'd better be prepared.

Basketball Pioneer: Now there can be alot of combinations and options for the Houston Rockets back court. What kind of role you expect you will play when you join the Rockets?

Spanoulis: It is very difficult to say; nobody knows right now what will be my role until I have arrived into Houston and practiced with my team. But one thing is clear. I can play point or shooting guard. I will play to the best of my capabilities to help our team.

Basketball Pioneer: How did you feel right then that the Houston Rockets picked you (2 years ago), but did not let you go to NBA?

Spanoulis: Sort of disappointed, but fortunately, not that much of frustration. Perhaps (as you've said) they did not think I am ready for NBA, and that I still need improvement.

Basketball Pioneer: So do you think it is a bad thing that you were not able to make it to NBA promptly right then ?

Spanoulis: I do not think so. To be able to play in Europe, it helped me to accumulate more experience; moreover, I thought in the past 2 years, I have been improving my game unceasingly. It is always good to be able to improve to be closer to NBA level.

Basketball Pioneer: So in what particular areas (of your game) you have improved in Europe this 2 years ?

Spanoulis: This is very difficult to explain clearly. As I kept accumulating game experiences, I learnt to be able to control a game as well as control myself better. I believed I have been growing and developing unceasingly.

Basketball Pioneer: Compared with these NBA players, what do you think are your competitive edges?

Spanoulis: I don't know. I really don't know what are my competitive edges. Maybe I understand team basketball better. In NBA, alot of time, it places alot of emphasis on individual abilities. I come from Europe; and in Europe we rely alot on teamwork.

Basketball Pioneer: In previous warm-up games, you seemed you did not score that many. So do you prefer passing to team mates more (than scoring)?

Spanoulis: Actually I like both, passing to team mates and scoring. Well sometimes it all depends on game situation. For example, in today's game (the first game of Greece versus Australia), I did not score until late into the game. Sometimes I only scored 2 points, but at other times, I might score as high as 20 points. It is all determined by game situation.

Basketball Pioneer: After you enter NBA, sooner or later, you will face the following situation: When summer comes, you either join the training of the Greek national team, or you train (in the summer league) and prepare for the new season. What will be your choice?

Spanoulis: Oh, this question is so difficult to answer. I don't really know what will be my final choice. (I think) I will only know what type of decision I will make, when it really happens.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:26 am
Posts: 3762Joined: Sat Jun 14, 2003 12:57 am
lets hope Yao punks his *****

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