Coming off a dream 2011-12 season that will never be forgotten, Olympiacos Piraeus faces the challenge of defending the Turkish Airlines Euroleague title. Few experts, if any, counted on Olympiacos to win the title, but the Reds kept improving as the 2011-12 season went on. Head coach Dusan Ivkovic then led his team to the Greek League title for the first time since 1997 to seal a memorable campaign. With a new season on the horizon, Olympiacos knows that it cannot rest on its laurels and must come out ready for every game this year. Olympiacos’s roots reach back to the 1930s and the club lifted its first Greek League title in 1949. The Reds’ golden era took place in the 1990s, when head coach Ioannis Ioannidis led Olympiacos to four Greek League titles between 1993 and 1996 and to the Euroleague title game in both 1994 and 1995. Despite respective losses against Joventut and Real Madrid, Olympiacos continued to fight for glory. And when Ivkovic came to the bench in 1997, the Reds promptly became the first Greek winner of a triple-crown – Greek League, Greek Cup and Euroleague titles – the latter by beating Barcelona 73-58 in Rome behind the likes of David Rivers, Georgios Sigalas, Eddie Johnson, Panagiotis Fasoulas, Franko Nakic and Milan Tomic. Olympiacos made it back to the Final Four in 1999, but it had to wait until 2002 to win another title, when it lifted the Greek Cup. The following season, Olympiacos also reached the Greek League finals and came within a victory of the Euroleague Final Four. After a couple of quiet years, Olympiacos returned to prominence in 2005-06 by challenging then-defending champion Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Euroleague playoffs and going back to the Greek League finals. Olympiacos has reached the Euroleague playoffs every season since and finally got back to the Final Four in 2009 in Berlin. The Reds, however, lost the Greek League finals, Greek Cup title and Euroleague semifinals against archrival Panathinaikos. In 2010, Olympiacos went a step farther and reached the Euroleague title game in Paris, but Barcelona walked away with the crown. Still the club added to its trophy case with the Greek Cup. In 2010-11, the club successfully defended the cup, but missed the Final Four and lost to Panathinaikos in the Greek League finals. Olympiacos took revenge last season by lifting the Euroleague and Greek League titles for the first time in 15 years and by doing so in memorable fashion. Behind superstar guard Vassilis Spanoulis, the rise of players like Georgios Printezis, Kostas Sloukas and Kostas Papanikolaou plus the arrivals of Acie Law and Joey Dorsey, Coach Ivkovic's team was ready to battle in the playoffs. Olympiacos knocked off Montepaschi Siena in four games and then topped heavy favorite FC Barcelona Regal 68-64 in the semifinal in Istanbul to reach the title game against CSKA Moscow. Down 53-34 with 12 minutes left, faith, defense, determination and fighting spirit allowed Olympiacos to rally and win the title, 61-62, on a last-second shot by Printezis. After that, the future looks bright for the Reds, with the 2012 title marking the start of a new era, as Olympiacos enters the new season as the team to beat and the defending champion!
Euroleague: 1997, 2012
Greek National League: 1948-49, 1959-60, 1975-76, 1977-78, 1992-93, 1993-94, 1994-95, 1995-96, 1996-97, 2011-12
Greek National Cup: 1976, 1977, 1978, 1980, 1994, 1997, 2002, 2010, 2011