Undoubtedly one of the best head coaches in the EuroLeague for almost a decade, and the first Greek coach ever to win a EuroLeague Championship Game, Georgios Bartzokas recently extended his contract with Olympiacos up to 2025.
His maiden presence in the EuroLeague benches in the 2012/2013 season with Olympiacos led to the second consecutive trophy for the “Reds”.
His response to this great achievement was followed by his realistic and humble statement “I just happened to be in the right place at the right time”, which showed the way he was approaching his work.
Prior to his resignation from the team, he signed Matt Lojeski and Bryant Dunston, two players that had a great EuroLeague career, especially the latter.
After his outstanding introduction to the EuroLeague with Olympiacos, he signed with Lokomotiv Kuban on 2015.
His stint with the Russian team signified the most successful era of Kuban, finishing first in the regular season, second in Top-16 and rallying past Barcelona (3-2) to reach the Final Four for the first time in club history.
Signing Chris Singleton and Victor Claver and keeping Malcolm Delaney and Anthony Randolph under his guidance led to the establishment of all four as elite EuroLeague players.
His great coaching skills and player choices lured most European teams and he eventually signed with Barcelona in 2016, who decided to pay Kuban the buyout.
However, his days with the “Blaugrana” were not successful. Due to a lot of players getting injured, Bartzokas never got the chance to work at the level he could with the Spanish team and his contract was terminated in 2017.
His next stop was Khimki, where he returned to his high coaching standards, leading the team to the EuroLeague playoffs and the VTB Finals without having the home-court advantage. He also managed to secure the team’s presence to next year’s EuroLeague.
After sitting out the 2018/19 season, he returned to Piraeus for the greatest challenge of his coaching career.
His task was simple. To lead Olympiacos to the new era, after the retirement of EuroLeague legend and undisputed captain, Vassilis Spanoulis, and the return of the team to the European elite since 2017.
His coaching performance was outstanding by all means. Great player choices , such as Moustapha Fall, Tyler Dorsey and Thomas Walkup, great coaching leading to the second place in the regular season and the first Final Four since 2017 led to his three-year contract extension.
Georgios Bartzokas is one of the best coaches of his era and his chemistry with Olympiacos will give us some great moments in the coming years. I am expecting this with great anticipation.