Club Profile: AEK Athens

Aug 24, 2015 by Eurocupbasketball.com Print
Club Profile: AEK Athens

AEK Athens returns to the Eurocup for the first time since 2007. AEK comes off a return-to-form season, in which it ranked fifth overall to reach the Greek League playoffs after a seven-year absence. Founded in 1924, AEK is one of the oldest basketball clubs in Greece. It won its first Greek League title in 1958 and reached its glory days soon after that with six more Greek crowns from 1963 to 1970. AEK was the first Greek club to take part in European competition in 1959 and the first to go all the way to the Euroleague semifinals. Those games in 1966 were played in a Final Four format and AEK lost to Slavia Prague. Back in the day, AEK played at Panathinaiko Stadium and brought in more than 40,000 fans for important games. Led by Georgios Amerikanos, the first Greek basketball superstar, AEK lifted the Cup Winners' Cup trophy in 1968 in front of 80,000 fans. AEK downed Slavia 89-82 to claim its first European title. AEK did not add more trophies until 1981, when it won the Greek Cup. Victor Alexander, Bane Prelevic and Willie Anderson led the club all the way to the Euroleague final in 1998, but Kinder Bologna stood in its way to glory. AEK avenged that defeat in the 2000 Saporta Cup final as it defeated Kinder 83-76 for the title. A new generation of young talents – Demos Dikoudis, Nikos Hatzis, Michalis Kakiouzis – paced AEK to back-to-back Greek Cup titles in 2000 and 2001, the 2001 Euroleague semifinals and the Greek League trophy in 2002. With Nikos Zisis as its floor general, AEK reached the Greek League final in 2003 and 2005 - the year in which AEK was one win away from returning to the Final Four. AEK later overcame heavy financial problems just to return to the Greek elite all the way from the third division in record time, and now wants to showcase its tradition and ambition in the Eurocup.

2014-15 Results - Greek League: quarterfinals, Greek Cup: -.