Who's Next? The Next Major Addition to Panathinaikos BC.

Who’s Next? The Next Major Addition to Panathinaikos BC.

Article updated on 15/07/2024.

Panathinaikos’ owner Teases Another Big Signing.

Panathinaikos owner Dimitris Giannakopoulos recently hinted at another significant addition to the team following the signing of Lorenzo Brown from Maccabi Tel Aviv. Giannakopoulos speculated on Instagram about the possibility of Panathinaikos going undefeated in the 2024-2025 Euroleague season with Brown and another high-profile player. Let’s delve into the potential candidates and analyze who might be the next big signing for Panathinaikos.

Sasha Vezenkov.

One prominent name on Panathinaikos’ radar is Sasha Vezenkov. Giannakopoulos has previously expressed interest in the Bulgarian forward, and recent reports suggest Panathinaikos has made a €10 million offer for him. Despite being informed by the Sacramento Kings that he is not in their plans for next season, Vezenkov’s active contract and desire to continue his NBA career make this a challenging acquisition.

Update: Sasha Vezenkov is close to an agreement with Olympiacos BC if he leaves the NBA.

Johnathan Motley.

Another potential target is Johnathan Motley. Rumors suggest that Panathinaikos needs to strengthen their center position, and Motley, who played for Fenerbahce, fits the bill. Reports from top Turkish insider Ozgur Yuksel indicate that Panathinaikos and Motley may have already reached an agreement. With Motley’s contract expiring, this signing seems more feasible, especially given the team’s need for a strong presence alongside Mathias Lessort.

Update: Johnathan Motley returns to EuroCup as he signed a 2-year deal with Hapoel Tel Aviv.

Serge Ibaka.

Of all the potential signings, Serge Ibaka appears to be the most realistic option for Panathinaikos. The team has reportedly offered the former NBA star €2.1 million per year. Ibaka recently denied rumors of signing with Real Madrid, which increases the likelihood of him accepting Panathinaikos’ offer. Unlike Motley, Ibaka’s playing style complements Lessort.

Update: Serge Ibaka leaves Bayern Munich after one season.

George Papagiannis.

George Papagiannis is another name linked with Panathinaikos. Despite Giannakopoulos’ interest and Papagiannis’ Greek passport, which would ease domestic league regulations, his current contract with Fenerbahce and the club’s reluctance to let him go make this signing difficult.

Update: Papagiannis has signed with AS Monaco.

Vasilije Micić.

The case of Micić is another difficult one for Panathinaikos to manage. However, sources say that if he eventually leaves the NBA, Panathinaikos will be one of his first choices due to coach Ergin Ataman, with whom he has excellent relations.

Update: According to Adrian Wojnarowski from ESPN, the Serbian guard has signed a deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Tornike Shengelia.

Georgian player Tornike Shengelia’s name has recently been rumored as a target for Panathinaikos. Reports suggest that Panathinaikos is interested in acquiring a versatile player who can play both the PF and C positions, and Shengelia is seen as a prime candidate. If this happens, Juancho Hernangomez may be at risk of leaving Panathinaikos. Despite having a mediocre year, Hernangomez has been quite beloved by Panathinaikos fans.

Goga Bitadze.

Another case being considered by Panathinaikos is that of Goga Bitadze whose contract with Orlando is expiring. In any case, a transfer from the NBA to Europe is not easy to complete. However, Bitadze’s case is still a possibility.

Update: Goga Bitadze is returning to the Orlando Magic on a three-year, $25 million contract.

Austin Wiley.

Lastly, Austin Wiley, who had a stellar season with Tofas and was named MVP of the Turkish league, has also been mentioned. However, recent reports indicate Wiley may have agreed to join Paris Basketball, making his move to Panathinaikos less likely.

Update: Hapoel Jerusalem signs Turkish basketball league MVP Austin Wiley.

Conclusion.

As I previously mentioned, considering Panathinaikos’ need for a strong center to pair with Mathias Lessort and the current data, the most probable next signing appears to be Serge Ibaka. His skill set, experience, and the substantial offer from Panathinaikos make him an ideal candidate. Despite interest from other clubs, Panathinaikos’ successful acquisition of Lorenzo Brown, who was also pursued by Real Madrid, suggests they could similarly secure Ibaka.

If Panathinaikos decides to target a more versatile player who can fill both the PF and C positions, then Tornike Shengelia is the most likely option.

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Posted in Blog, Panathinaikos AKTOR Athens, Teams.

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