Georgian center Giorgi Shermadini (23 years old, 2.16 meters – 7’1”) has signed a contract for one year plus option with Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv. The player will come to Israel soon for a physical exam.
Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv is pleased to announce that they have signed talented young Georgian big man Giorgi Shermadini to a one year (plus option for a second year) contract. Shermadini, the center of the Georgian National Team who has played for Panathinaikos, Ljubljana, and Cantù, is Maccabi’s first acquisition for the 2012 – 2013 season. The athlete is expected to arrive in Israel soon for the customary physical examination.
Shermadini is an extremely active player in the paint, with a finely-honed sensefor offensive rebounds and with excellent mid-range and free throw shooting skills. He is an outstanding pick-and-roll player with an impressive defensive presence. He began his professional basketball career in 2005 – 2006 with Maccabi Tbilisi whenhe was only 16 years old. In each of his three years with the team Shermadini was chosen Georgian League Player of the Year. In his final season with the club (2007 – 2008), he posted averages of 33.5 points, 18.4 rebounds, and 3.3 blocks per game.
His first steps in the big leagues came in November of 2008, when he was signed by Greek powerhouse Panathinaikos for the 2008 – 2009 season. He didn’t get much playing time that season, an outstanding one for PAO, which won the Euroleague Championship, the Greek Championship, and the Greek Cup. During the 2009 – 2010 season, coach Obradović gave the young Georgian more playing time, and he played in 12 Euroleague games,averaging 4.5 points per game. After two seasons with Panathinaikos, Shermadini was loaned to Slovenian team Olimpija Ljubljana, where he contributed 7.4 points and 3.4 rebounds in the Euroleague and faced Maccabi for the first time; in a game between the teams at Nokia Arena he scored 15 points.
Last season, Shermadini was loaned to Italian team Cantù which had just returned to the Euroleague. The center once again met Maccabi on the hardwood, this time during the Top 16 round, and showed once again how much he liked playing at Nokia as he delivered the game of his Euroleague career: 15 points (11 of 11 from the foul line), 10 rebounds, and 4 assists, with an index ranking of 31. He finished the season with averages of 10.9 points and 5.5 rebounds in the Euroleague. Shermadini was particularly effective in the Top 16, with averages of 13.2 points, 6.3 rebounds, and drawing 6.5 fouls per game and earning an index average of 18.8 (fourth in the Euroleague). He took more trips to the foul line than any other player in the Top 16, and took advantage of that with 37 of 40 (92.5%) shooting there. This past March he broke his foot and was forced to sit out the Italian League playoffs, in which Cantù was eliminated in the fifth game of the quarterfinals against Pesaro.
Shermadini is a long-time member of the Georgian National Team, having been a star there from his teens. At age 17 he was the youngest player ever on the Georgian NT, playing alongside such greats as Zaza Pachulia and Vladimir Boisa. In 2008 he blossomed in the FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship with averages of 21.5 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 3.7 blocks per game. Today as noted earlier, he plays for the senior National Team, which made its first appearance in the European Championship in 2011 and finished in 11th place.
In spite of his youth, Shermadini has won an impressive number of titles: Euroleague Championship (2009), two Greek Championships (2009 and 2010), and the Greek Cup (2009) with Panathinaikos, and the Slovenian Cup (2011) with Ljubljana.