Konstantinos "Kostas" Papanikolaou (Greek: Κωνσταντίνος "Κώστας" Παπανικολάου; born July 31, 1990) is a Greek professional basketball player for Olympiacos of the Greek Basket League and the EuroLeague. Standing at 2.04 m (6'8 1⁄2") tall, he plays at the small forward position. He has previously played in the NBA for the Houston Rockets and Denver Nuggets, and is also a member of the senior Greek national team.
Papanikolaou in warm-ups with Olympiacos in 2011
|No. 16 – Olympiacos|
|League||Greek Basket League|
|Born||July 31, 1990|
|Listed height||204 cm (6 ft 8 in)|
|Listed weight||107 kg (236 lb)|
|NBA draft||2012 / Round: 2 / Pick: 48th overall|
|Selected by the New York Knicks|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Stats at NBA.com|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Papanikolaou began playing basketball with the youth teams of Proteas Grevenon and Aris, and he made his pro debut in the Greek League, with Aris, during the 2008–09 season. He was named the MVP of the Greek Youth All-Star Game in 2009. He was also named the Greek League's Best Young Player in 2009.
On September 14, 2009, Papanikolaou signed a five-year, €1.3 million net income deal with Olympiacos, after Olympiacos paid a €950,000 buyout fee to Aris, to secure his player rights. Papanikolaou's contract with Olympiacos had an NBA buyout clause worth €1 million.
With Olympiacos, he won the EuroLeague and Greek League championships in 2012. Papanikolaou was voted the EuroLeague Rising Star for the EuroLeague 2012–13 season. With Olympiacos, he also won the 2012–13 season EuroLeague championship.
FC Barcelona (2013–2014)Edit
On July 20, 2013, Papanikolaou signed a four-year deal with Spanish League club FC Barcelona, after Barcelona bought Papanikolaou out of his contract with Olympiacos, paying a transfer buyout fee of €1.5 million to Olympiacos, and giving Papanikolaou a contract worth €5.5 million net income, during the contract's first three years (the 4th optional year would be at an additional salary). The contract included NBA buyout clauses in the amounts of €1.1 million for 2014, and €750,000 for 2015.
Barcelona went on to win the 2013–14 Spanish Liga ACB championship.
Houston Rockets (2014–2015)Edit
On June 28, 2012, Papanikolaou was selected with the 48th overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft by the New York Knicks. On July 16, 2012, his draft rights were acquired by the Portland Trail Blazers, via a trade that sent Raymond Felton to the Knicks.
On September 23, 2014, Papanikolaou signed with the Houston Rockets. On February 13, 2015, he took part in the Rising Stars Challenge of the NBA All-Star Game; in spite of an injury-plagued rookie season, during which he averaged 4.2 points and 2.7 rebounds per game, while coming off the bench, the Rockets decided to pick up his team option for the 2015–16 season.
Denver Nuggets (2015–2016)Edit
On July 20, 2015, the Rockets traded Papanikolaou, Joey Dorsey, Nick Johnson, Pablo Prigioni, a 2016 first-round draft pick, and cash considerations to the Denver Nuggets, in exchange for Ty Lawson and a 2017 second-round draft pick. On September 25, 2015, he was waived by the Nuggets. He later re-signed with Denver on November 5, 2015, and made his debut for the team that night. He was waived again by the Nuggets on January 7, 2016, before his salary became fully guaranteed.
Return to the Olympiacos (2016–present)Edit
On January 20, 2016, Papanikolaou signed a two-and-a-half-year deal with Olympiacos, returning to the club for a second stint. On July 5, 2018, Papanikolaou and Olympiacos officially agreed on a new three-year contract extension.
National team careerEdit
Greek junior nationalEdit
As a member of the junior national basketball teams of Greece, Papanikolaou won the silver medal at the 2007 FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship and the gold medal at the 2008 FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship. He also won the silver medal at the 2009 FIBA Under-19 World Cup. Papanikolaou also won the gold medal at the 2009 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship, where he was also named to the All-Tournament Team and won the MVP award. He then won the silver medal at the 2010 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship with Greece's junior national team, where he was also named to the All-Tournament Team.
Greek senior national teamEdit
In August 2009, Papanikolaou made his debut with the senior men's Greek national basketball team, in a friendly game. With Greece's senior national team, he then played at EuroBasket 2011, the 2012 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, the EuroBasket 2013, the 2014 FIBA World Cup, the EuroBasket 2015, and the EuroBasket 2017. He also played at the 2019 FIBA World Cup qualification.
Awards and accomplishmentsEdit
- Greek Youth All-Star Game: MVP: (2009)
- 2× Greek League Best Young Player: (2009, 2012)
- 2× Greek Cup Winner: (2010, 2011)
- 2× EuroLeague Champion: (2012, 2013)
- EuroLeague Finals Top Scorer: (2012)
- 2× Greek League Champion: (2012, 2016)
- 3× Greek League Best Five: (2012, 2013, 2017)
- 3× Greek League All-Star: (2013, 2018, 2019)
- EuroLeague Rising Star: (2013)
- Spanish League Champion: (2014)
Greek junior national teamEdit
- 2007 FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship: Silver
- 2008 Albert Schweitzer Tournament: Gold
- 2008 FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship: Gold
- 2009 FIBA Under-19 World Cup: Silver
- 2009 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship: Gold
- 2009 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship: All-Tournament Team
- 2009 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship: MVP
- 2010 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship: Silver
- 2010 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship: All-Tournament Team
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field-goal percentage||3P%||3-point field-goal percentage||FT%||Free-throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game||PIR||Performance Index Rating|
Note: The EuroLeague is not the only competition in which the player participated for the team during the season. He also played in domestic competition, and regional competition if applicable.
|†||Denotes seasons in which Papanikolaou won the EuroLeague|
|Led the league|
- PAPANIKOLAOU, KOSTAS HEIGHT: 2.04.
- "Olympiacos officially announced Papanikolaou". Eurohoops.net. January 20, 2016. Retrieved January 20, 2016.
- "Best young player, Papanikolaou". ArisBC.gr. June 24, 2009. Archived from the original on August 9, 2014. Retrieved June 24, 2009.
- "OLYMPIACOS nabs prospect Papanikolaou". Euroleague.net. September 14, 2009. Archived from the original on August 9, 2014. Retrieved September 14, 2009.
- "Πάει στην Μπαρτσελόνα ο Παπανικολάου!". RedPlanet.gr (in Greek). July 20, 2013. Archived from the original on July 26, 2014. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
- "Παπανικολάου: "Ο καθένας μπορεί να γράφει ό,τι θέλει"". RedPlanet.gr (in Greek). April 22, 2013. Archived from the original on August 10, 2014. Retrieved April 22, 2013.
- "Rising Star Trophy winner: Kostas Papanikolaou, Olympiacos Piraeus". Euroleague.net. May 1, 2013. Retrieved May 1, 2013.
- "FC BARCELONA lands Kostas Papanikolaou!". Euroleague.net. July 20, 2013. Archived from the original on July 26, 2014. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
- "Interest from Houston for "Pap", not offer yet". Eurohoops.net. July 15, 2014. Archived from the original on September 18, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2014.
- "ΑΠΟΚΛΕΙΣΤΙΚΟ: Πάει Μπαρτσελόνα ο Παπανικολάου!". Sport24.gr (in Greek). July 20, 2013. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
- "Knicks Acquire Felton & Thomas". KnicksNow.com. July 16, 2012. Archived from the original on April 19, 2014. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Rockets Acquire Papanikolaou, Todorovic and Two Future 2nd Round Picks". NBA.com. July 10, 2013. Retrieved July 10, 2013.
- "Rockets Sign Kostas Papanikolaou". NBA.com. September 23, 2014. Retrieved September 23, 2014.
- "Rockets pick up option on Kostas Papanikolaou". blog.chron.com. June 24, 2015. Retrieved June 24, 2015.
- "Nuggets Acquire Joey Dorsey, Nick Johnson, Kostas Papanikolaou, Pablo Prigioni, Cash Considerations and First Round Pick From Houston". NBA.com. July 20, 2015. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
- Stein, Marc (September 25, 2015). "Sources: Kostas Papanikolaou, part of Ty Lawson deal, waived by Nuggets". ESPN.com. Retrieved September 25, 2015.
- "Nuggets Sign Kostas Papanikolaou". NBA.com. November 5, 2015. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
- "Hayward scores 20, Jazz beat Nuggets 96-84". NBA.com. November 5, 2015. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
- Wojnarowski, Adrian (January 7, 2016). "Sources: Nuggets waive forward Kostas Papanikolaou". Yahoo.com. Retrieved January 8, 2016.
- "Olympiacos officially announced Papanikolaou". Euroleague.net. January 20, 2016. Retrieved January 20, 2016.
- "GOLDEN GREEKS CONQUER FRANCE". FIBAEurope.com. July 26, 2009. Retrieved July 26, 2009.
- "MVP ALBICY HEADLINES ALL TOURNAMENT TEAM". FIBAEurope.com. July 18, 2010. Retrieved July 18, 2010.
- Career statistics and player information from NBA.com, or Basketball-Reference.com
- Kostas Papanikolaou at acb.com (in Spanish)
- Kostas Papanikolaou at draftexpress.com
- Kostas Papanikolaou at esake.gr (in Greek)
- Kostas Papanikolaou at eurobasket.com
- Kostas Papanikolaou at euroleague.net
- Kostas Papanikolaou at FIBA.com