Kostas Papanikolaou has officially joined Barcelona from Olympiacos on a four-year deal, it was confirmed today.
The signing, pending medical tests has been on the cards for nearly a week and it almost certainly ends the possibility of the 22-year-old moving to the Houston Rockets as originally planned if he had stayed with the current Euroleague champions.
Papanikolaou, a natural small forward is versatile enough to play the shooting guard spot and might look to rotate with Juan Carlos Navarro in short spurts. The Greek youngster came out of his shell at the Euroleague Final Four, last year in Istanbul, helping Olympiacos win the title by leading all scorers with 18 points. He then helped his side win a second straight Euroleague crown in this year’s final in London against Real Madrid.
With the addition of the current Euroleague Rising Star award winner, Barcelona have strengthened their squad considerably ahead of the new domestic seasons, and especially the Euroleague where they will face CSKA Moscow, Fenerbahce, Budivielnik Kiev, Partizan and Nanterre in the regular season stages.