Efthimios Rentzias

Infobox Euroleague Player

caption =
name = Efthimios Rentzias
Ευθύμιος Ρεντζιάς
nickname =
position = Center
height_ft = 6 | height_in = 11.5
weight_lbs = 260
league = Greek League
Spanish League
Turkish League
Italian League
team = (retired)
jersey =| number =
nationality = Greek
birth_date = birth date and age|1976|1|11
birth_place = flagicon|GRC Trikala, Greece
college =
draft = 1strd round, 23rd overall
draft_year = 1996
draft_team = Denver Nuggets
career_start = 1993
career_end = 2006
former_teams = PAOK BC (1993–1997)
FC Barcelona (1997–2002)
Philadelphia 76ers (2002–2003)
Ülkerspor (2003–2004)
Montepaschi Siena (2004–2005)
Fórum Valladolid (2005–2006)

awards = FIBA Under-21 World Championship MVP 1995

Efthimios (or Efthimis) Rentzias (in Greek: Ευθύμιος Ρεντζιάς; 2.12m (6 ft 11 ½ in) in height, born January 11, 1976, in Trikala, Greece) was a professional basketball player. He was most notably a former member of the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers. He played the center position.

Early career

Rentzias played his first basketball for the youth team Danaos, a local team of Trikala, Greece. He began his professional career at the age of 17 with PAOK Thessaloniki of the Greek League in the 1993-94 season. With PAOK he won the Korac Cup championship in the 1993-94 season and the Greek Cup championship in the 1994-95 season. He was named the MVP of the 1995 FIBA Under-21 World Championship while playing with the Greek Under-19 national team, helping Greece to win the tournament's gold medal. In the process Greece beat (by a score of 98-78) a U.S. team that featured future NBA players Stephon Marbury and Samaki Walker. During that period Rentzias was considered to be one of the most talented European basketball players.

Later career

Originally selected with the 23rd overall pick by the Denver Nuggets in the 1996 NBA Draft while under contract with PAOK, Rentzias opted not to play in the NBA at that time.

He later transferred to FC Barcelona for the 1997-98 season. In his last year with Barcelona (2001-02), Rentzias averaged 9.2 points per game and 3.5 rebounds per game in 17.3 minutes per contest in 51 games in both the Spanish League (ACB) and the Euroleague. He shot 61.6 percent from the field, 36.3 percent from three-point range and 71.4 percent from the foul line. With Barcelona Rentzias won his second Korac Cup championship in the 1998-99 season and he also won 2 Spanish League championships in the 1998-99 and 2000-01 seasons.

In his only season in the NBA, during the 2002-03 campaign with the 76ers, he played in only 35 games, averaging 1.5 points per game. He was the second Greek-born basketball player at the time to ever suit up for an NBA team.

He subsequently played for Ülkerspor (Turkish League), Montepaschi Siena (Italian league) and Forum Valladolid (Spanish league).

Rentzias had plans to come back to PAOK BC to finish his career. Unfortunately, in August 2006, he announced his retirement from basketball at the age of 30 because of injury problems.

Career with the Greek national team

Rentzias was a part of the junior Greek national men's basketball team that won the gold medal at the 1995 FIBA Under-21 World Championship. He was voted the MVP of the tournament.

Rentzias was a member of the senior men's Greek national basketball team from 1994 to 2002 and competed in the 1996 Olympic Basketball Tournament at Athens. That was the just the second ever appearance by Greece's men's basketball team in a Summer Olympics and their first since the 1952 Olympic Basketball Tournament. He averaged 5.0 points per game and 4.1 rebounds per game in 12 minutes per game over seven contests in the 1996 Olympic Games.

He also played in the 1995 European Championship, the 1997 European Championship, the 2001 European Championship, the 2003 European Championship, the 1994 FIBA World Championship and the 1998 FIBA World Championship with the Greek national squad.

Club career synopsis

* Danaos Trikalon
* 1993-97: PAOK BC (Greek League)
* 1997-02: FC Barcelona (Spanish League)
* 2002-03: Philadelphia 76ers (NBA)
* 2003-04: Ülkerspor (Turkish League)
* 2004-05: Montepaschi Siena (Italian League)
* 2005-06: Fórum Valladolid (Spanish League)

Club trophies

*2 Korac Cups: with PAOK in 1994; and with FC Barcelona in 1999.
*Greek Cup Championship with PAOK in 1995.
*2 Spanish League Championships with FC Barcelona: in 1999 and 2001.
*Spanish Cup Championship with Barcelona in 2001.

External links

* [http://www.nba.com/playerfile/efthimios_rentzias/index.html Player file for Efthimios Rentzias]
* [http://www.nba.com/historical/playerfile/index.html?player=efthimios_rentzias NBA.com historical player file]
* [http://www.olympionikes.gr/site/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=177&Itemid=31 olympionikes.gr]

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