The Top 10 most popular Euroleague players

The "Octopus", a fan favourite ©Hankish on Flickr

I long wondered who actually was the most popular player in the Euroleague. My methodology is not flawless. Maybe the number of sold jerseys would have made a nice little criteria. But since merchandising still has ways the go in Europe and I myself failed to buy a Ricky Rubio jersey for my brother this Christmas, I settled on the Facebook index. I compared the Top 100 Euroleague players by ranking and the best of the rest depending on the number of fans they had on their Facebook page (or group). The results were very surprising. I expected American players to be high on the list and Ricky Rubio a clear number 1. Well, see the results for yourselves.

10. Nikola Peković (Panathinaikos – Montenegro) – 10,023 fans

The best big man in Europe. Raised the Euroleague trophy for his first year with the Greens in 2009.

9. Nikos Zisis (Montepaschi Siena – Greece) – 10,911 fans

Once a promising young combo guard who faded into obscurity after a disappointing stint with CSKA Moscow. Still has the looks to attract a vastly feminine fanbase.

8. Novica Veličković (Real Madrid – Serbia) – 12,136 fans

The Euroleague Young Player of the Year last fall. His outstanding skillset makes him a basketball fan darling.

7. Ricky Rubio (FC Barcelona – Spain) – 12,263 fans

What? SEVENTH? Is Facebook banned in Spain or what?

6. Šarūnas Jasikevičius (Panathinaikos – Lithuania) – 12,268 fans

Seriously on the decline but still a killer in the money time.

5. Linas Kleiza (Olympiacos – Lithuania) – 15,342 fans

I still wonder why this talented guy is not playing in the NBA anymore. Made the transition to the Euroleague seem eaaaasy.

4. Milos Teodosić (Olympiacos – Serbia) 15,564 fans

Has Euroleague Young Player of the Year written all over him. An outrageously gifted point guard.

3. Vasileios Spanoulis (Panathinaikos – Greece) – 17,567 fans

The Final Four MVP last year. Plus he plays for one of the most popular clubs in Europe and represents an apparently very active Greek community on Facebook.

2. Erazem Lorbek (FC Barcelona – Slovenia) – 19,054 fans

Jaw-dropping. How this big man with soft hands managed to raise close to 20,000 fans on Facebook is a mystery to me. The guy must upload pictures of his girlfriend or something. I need to investigate on that.

1. Dimitris “The Octopus” Diamantidis (Panathinaikos – Greece) – 38,372 fans

The posterchild of the Euroleague, winner of all 5 Best Defender of the Year awards since its introduction in 2005, has twice more fans than his second. At first I found it amazing. Then I checked just for fun and realised Brian Scalabrine has 54,927 fans on Facebook.

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “The Top 10 most popular Euroleague players

  1. anen

    This list is flawed!!!
    Ricky Rubio DOES NOT have a facebook/mypace they are run by a “fan” that wants to be him. His verified twitter account is in no way connected to facebook he only has twitter, official website, and a youtube channel all listed on his twitter page

    http://twitter.com/rickyrubio9

    He has 96,755 followers. Ricky Rubio is #1 most popular player in Europe right now

  2. anen

    help RR get 100,000 twitter followers
    he thanks u in advance…

  3. brickowski

    @anen
    Line 2: “My methodology is not flawless”.
    I think that none of the above run their Facebook fan page.
    Who knows how many followers Diamantidis would have if he had a Twitter account? :-)
    It was the only way to have data on all players and I still find it surprising Rubio has so few fans on this Facebook fan page.
    Anyway, no disrespect to Ricky who kinda sits number 1 of my 12stars ranking in the top right corner of the homepage.
    And by the way I’m one of the 96,755… 96,778… 96,779 followers.

  4. anen

    His facebook “fan” page has very few fans because it’s utter crap. I mean what “fan” talks like it’s really him talking? A long time ago (before draft) I used to follow RR facebook cause I thought it was really him but notice it didn’t correlate with what was being said on his twitter that’s how i knew it was fake so I stop following it as well as many others stopped too. Also it’s a crappy & horrible “fan” page no news is posted or any factual information that keeps you up to date just pointless recent entries like “como estas” (how are you) he doesn’t even say that on twitter…

    anyways I only follow Official/Verified athlete accounts that are really run by them

    FYI Dimitris Diamantidis has a twitter account
    http://twitter.com/diamantidis

    he has 52 followers ^^^ but I don’t know if that’s him it’s Not Verified

  5. brickowski

    “but I don’t know if that’s him it’s Not Verified”
    -> I know you’re trying to make a point but that was pretty hypocrite – I hope you agree.

  6. anen

    Sorry. I don’t agree with u calling me a hypocrite.

    I don’t think u got my point either. All I was trying to say was the list should not have been just strickly facebook followers alone because some of them are 1.) not them 2.) really bad “fan” pages therefore it will sqew the # of followers on there, making this list innacurate. Instead it should of been more centered on verified accounts from Which ever social networking service they use. OR u could have just taken the average combo of all three: myspace,facebook, & twitter just add the words “Verified/Not-verified” in parenthacies next to each so us fans would know if its the real deal, But you will have to do a lot more homework for this one.

    it was nice talking to u good day.

  7. Q

    Just one thing to say : Greek = Geek

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