They were 10 seconds of basketball fate that are seared into the memories of all who witnessed them.
The missed free throw. The rebound. The team leader gliding upcourt, stutter-stepping toward the basket, collapsing the defense. The perfect, flick-of-the-wrist pass to the local kid who had grown up among the team's supporters. The pass morphing instantly into a sublime, one-handed shot. Time stopping as all eyes followed its short flight path.
The ball hitting nothing but net.
It was the most consequential shot in pro basketball history, the only one ever to decide a major continental basketball title in the season's final second.
Now, it will be remembered, too, as the Play of the Decade for 2010 to 2020 as chosen by Turkish Airlines EuroLeague fans.
After two months of voting on 100 memorable plays, the fans overwhelmingly elected the 2012 title-winning shot by Georgios Printezis of Olympiacos Piraeus as the iconic moment of the decade. And just like his basket also culminated one of the great comebacks in basketball history, the vote for Olympiacos came in a rally down the stretch on Monday and Tuesday. The play nonetheless won with 60.5% of the votes, just shy of its preliminary-round high of 62.9%. No other play among the 10 finalists had won its preliminary round with more than 40% of the vote, proving that the Olympiacos title-winner was the resounding choice of the fans throughout the survey.
In second place came a magical steal and behind-the-back pass from the next season by the legendary Dimitris Diamantidis of Panathinaikos Athens.
And in third place was Tyrese Rice's game-winning fastbreak layup for Maccabi Tel Aviv in the 2014 semifinals.
Euroleague Basketball thanks all who participated in the Fans Choice Play of the Decade survey to help celebrate 10 years' worth of basketball growth and excitement as never seen before in Europe – and looks forward to coming together again to make the next decade even better!