Dimitris Diamantidis facts for kids
Diamantidis playing against Apollon Patras, in 2013.
|Born||May 6, 1980
|Listed height||6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)|
|Listed weight||195 lb (88 kg)|
|NBA Draft||2002 / Undrafted|
|League||Greek Basket League
|Career highlights and awards|
Professional Greek League career stats leaders
|Career EuroLeague statistics|
|Points||2,495 (9.0 ppg)|
|Rebounds||969 (3.5 rpg)|
|Assists||1,255 (4.5 apg)|
Dimitris Diamantidis (Greek: Δημήτρης Διαμαντίδης; born May 6, 1980) is a retired Greek professional basketball player, who spent the last twelve seasons of his EuroLeague career with Panathinaikos Athens, where he currently serves as the team's general manager, alongside Fragiskos Alvertis. Widely regarded as one of the greatest European players ever to grace the game, he marked his era by being the most versatile player in the EuroLeague, serving as an inspiration to a whole generation of young European stars.
At the age of fourteen, Diamantidis started his basketball career with the youth clubs of his hometown team, AS Kastoria. Five years later, he made his professional debut with Iraklis Thessaloniki, and by 2003, he had emerged as an all-around star in the Greek League. He became a member of Panathinaikos Athens in the summer of 2004, with whom he won three EuroLeague titles, in 2007, 2009, and 2011, with the last two coming as the team's captain. Diamantidis' numerous accolades in the premier European club competition include a EuroLeague MVP Award, two EuroLeague Final Four MVP Awards, four All-EuroLeague First Team selections, as well as a record six EuroLeague Best Defender Awards. He is the only player to have earned all four aforementioned EuroLeague end-of-season distinctions, even more so in a single year. Diamantidis was the only Greek player who was voted to both the EuroLeague 2000–10 All-Decade Team and the EuroLeague 2010–20 All-Decade Team. He is the EuroLeague's all-time leader in steals since the stat was first officially recognized starting with the 1991–92 season. On April 1, 2016, he was honored with a EuroLeague Basketball Legend Award.
Amidst a long series of "derbies of the eternal enemies", opposing Panathinaikos and Olympiacos Piraeus, Diamantidis thrived, as he faced Olympiacos every year for twelve consecutive seasons, including in eleven Greek League Finals, six Greek Cup Finals, and a EuroLeague semifinal. He won nine Greek League and ten Greek Cup titles, alongside a record six Greek League Finals MVP and a record six Greek League MVP awards, as well as two Greek Cup MVP awards. Diamantidis' personal friendship and rivalry with Olympiacos star Vassilis Spanoulis, was at the center of attention throughout six Greek League Finals and three Greek Cup Finals encounters. Diamantidis' self-effacing psyche helped relieve tension between the two powerhouses, when he retired in 2016.
As a member of the senior Greek national team, Diamantidis won a EuroBasket gold medal in 2005; while anchoring a defense that allowed just 59.7 points per game. He also scored the three-pointer that sealed the fate of the semifinal game against France, just seconds before the game's final buzzer. He also led that tournament in assists, and was a part of the All-EuroBasket Team. In 2006, he played a pivotal role in a FIBA World Cup silver medal campaign, with Greece stunning Team USA in the semifinals, and Diamantidis finishing as the competition's steals leader. Diamantidis was also a two-time Olympian, as he donned the Greek colours in 2004 and 2008, and on both occasions earned the fifth place of the tournament, which is tied for the all-time best finish for Greece. On the basis of his myriad achievements, he was named the Mister Europa Player of the Year by Italian sports magazine Superbasket in 2007. He was also named the Greek Male Athlete of the Year in 2007.
Images for kids
Dimitris Diamantidis Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.