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Sunday, January 20, 2013

Nikos Galis: Greece's Global Greek Basketball Legend Nominated for the American Hall of Fame

Global Greek Nick Galis aka Nikos Galis
Greece's legendary basketball player - European Basketball's Greatest scorer

 International Committee Nominee in the American basketball Michael Naismith Hall of Fame for 2013.

Who that person will be is to be announced on 15 February 2012.  

Born in the USA to Greek parents in 1957, Nikos Galis had the markings of a top class basketball player from a very young age. At his disposal was a world class career in the country where Basketball was invented and reigned supreme. 

Nikos Galis' passion for his homeland and for basketball brought him back to Greece. A life changing move and one that would affect us all. Disciplined and determined, his untiring leadership and his incredible talent paved the way and helped establish basketball as a mainstream sport in Greece. Nikos Galis' tremendous success inspired many, bringing tens of thousands to the stadiums and leading the way for the basketball champions that Greece would produce over the next 25 years. 

 We did it! Greece did it! 
A jubilant Nikos Galis with the EuroBasket Trophy 
14 June 1987


Greece's unprecedented success in the 1987 EuroBasket Championship held in Greece  in front of thousands of  cheering spectators, inspired and continues to inspire generations of young people who dare to dream of a spot in the hallowed halls of Basketball...

Anyone who was lucky enough to watch that nail biting thriller of a game between Greece and Russia which took place on one of Athens'  wonderfully hot summer nights will remember every single moment... 



it was absolutely amazing and kept us on the edge of our seats until the very last second, when Kambouris netted the baskets the score went to 103-101 in Greece's favour, the referee blew the final whistle and all hell broke loose! Even though Kambouris had clinched the victory,  Galis was the star of the game, he had scored a record 40 points and deserved the adulation his team saved for him as they carried him around Athens'  Stadium of Peace and Friendship on their shoulders as well as the MVP title bestowed upon him

In every neighbourhood a cheer went out from every house as people who had been watching the game on their balconies that warm summer night, rejoiced. In every  city around Greece people poured into the streets to celebrate a well-deserved victory and a tremendous game.  

Athens' famous Omonia Square was flooded with jubilant fans waving the Galanoleyki, the blue and white flag whose colours the players proudly wore that night and basketball in Greece would never be the same again...  

That match would inspire thousands of young people to hit the courts; every boy, every girl wanted to play Basketball to be like Galis, Yiannakis, Fasoulas and the rest of the boys! Greek basketball would go on to produce top level players like Diamantidis, Kakiousis, Scortsianitis, Spanoulis, Papaloukas and many others. National teams that would reap Olympic medals and championships around the world, but nothing could beat the legend that was Galis


For that and that alone, Galis deserves a place in the Naismith Hall of Fame ...just as he was enshrined in the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2007

You can have your say too by casting a vote in the ESPN Poll on the 2012 nominees - click here  to vote for Nikos 'Nick' Galis... it just might help! 

Nick Galis' legend and tremendous contribution to Greece's sporting history earned him the honour of being chosen by the Athens 2004 Olympic Games organisers to be the first torchbearer in the Opening Ceremony








Nikos Galis - 
first torchbearer of the Olympic Flame 
in the Athens 2004 Opening Ceremony final Torch Relay
at the Athens Olympic Stadium 
13 August 2004

PS If you were ever happened to be around when Nick was somewhere in public, you could see the star quality... it didn't take long for people to realise who this well-dressed, quietly spoken gentleman was and then you would see him surrounded by admiring fans of all ages... young and old! We happened to be dining next door to him at the Byzantine Cafe of the Athens Hilton one day, the year he signed up for Panathinaikos... well, that had to be seen to be believed but you could see it made him happy. As he said to Rigas Dardalis of Eurohoops when asked what did he get the most satisfaction from-the recognition or his titles and records?

The love of the people. Then comes everything else. When they see you on the street and they have the thirst to talk to you, that’s the greatest honor an athlete can have”.

We will leave you with another  statement that Nick made to Rigas Dardalis in the same interview, which we hope our politicians have read or will read...


If the politicians work like basketball players, meaning as a unit, then we can achieve anything. We can’t see egos and we must work together in order to see the country out of the crisis. This is something that can be done. 
Well said  Nick, well said! 

Nikos Galis - Wikipedia

PS He didn't make it but we'll keep plugging! He deserves it!

At Global Greek World, We ♥ Greece...and it shows! 

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