Top 16 profiles: Georgios Printezis

Jan 03, 2012 by Euroleague.net Print
Life gives you second opportunities sometimes and Georgios Printezis is making the most of his second stint with Olympiacos BC Piraeus. Printezis battled injuries during his two seasons with Unicaja, but has returned to the Reds to become one of the best sixth men in the 2011-12 Turkish Airlines Euroleague. His role and importance have kept growing and all Olympiacos fans know that Printezis's best moments are yet to come this season.

Born in Athens and raised at Olympiacos, Printezis offers very valuable versatility and quickness at both forward spots. Though he is used mainly at power forward by coach Dusan Ivkovic, Printezis can take the outside shot and runs the floor better than most players his size. In his ninth Euroleague season at only age 26, Printezis has provided much-needed experience to a team full of young, up-and-coming players who are quickly learning the hard way.

Printezis played his first Euroleague games in the 2002-03 season, but did not have an important role for the Reds in the beginning. He was sent on loan to Larissa, where he averaged 11.5 points in 24 Greek League games in 2006-07. Printezis returned to Olympiacos with a much more relevant role and helped the Reds to return to the Greek League finals and the Euroleague Playoffs. And with the Greek national team, he won a bronze medal with Greece at EuroBasket 2009. Printezis moved to Unicaja that summer, but a severe shoulder injury limited his chances to shine in the 2009-10 season. Printezis returned to Olympiacos last April and to once again become a solid contributor for the Reds.

Printezis is a very effective player under the baskets, as he can shoot jump hooks with either hand and finish in transition with quickness and great determination. Playing power forward alongside tall '3's like Marko Keselj or Kostas Papanikolaou gives Olympiacos a lot of options on offense, as he can spread the floor for Lazaros Papadopoulos or Andreas Glyniadakis to play one-on-one in the low post. Printezis was instrumental in keeping Olympiacos undefeated at home in the regular season by offering energy and instant offense off the bench. With more important games coming up, expect Printezis to keep helping Olympiacos in as many ways as possible.

Printezis has averaged 9.5 points on 62.2% two-point shooting in less than 21 minutes per games. His numbers, however, climbed to 13.5 points on 22 of 30 two-pointers (73.3%) in the Reds' six wins, but dipped to 3.5 points on 40% two-point shooting in four defeats. In other words, the more Printezis gets involved, the better the chances are Olympiacos for to win games. Right at the prime of his career, Printezis will keep leading Olympiacos as his rare combination of size, mobility, know-how and quick hands is tough to find at any level.