David Blatt, who just Thursday announced that he was leaving Maccabi Tel Aviv to pursue a coaching career in the NBA, will interview with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday regarding their head coaching vacancy:
Yahoo Sources: David Blatt will interview for the Cleveland Cavaliers head coaching job on Wednesday. http://t.co/lRTqf2hydj
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 15, 2014
Blatt is one of the most successful European coaches in recent history, although his roots are actually in the United States. He grew up in Boston and played his college ball at Princeton, then moved overseas where he played professionally in Israel for 12 years.
He joined the coaching ranks in 1993, and has had great success at both the club and international levels. His Maccabi Tel Aviv team won the Euroleague in 2013-14, the Israeli Cup in 2013, and both the Israeli Cup and the Israeli League in 2012. Blatt also guided Spain to a gold medal at the 2007 FIBA EuroBasket tournament, and has won numerous other accolades throughout his 20-plus year career.
The Cavaliers will be hiring their third coach in five years, and after the latest Mike Brown debacle they are desperately in need of some stability on the bench. Blatt could certainly bring that, as his wealth of experience makes him a rare asset in the head coaching market: a championship-winning coach who can be had at a (relatively) low price.
While he’ll undoubtedly need to adjust both his tactics and personality to the American game, Blatt has experience working with NBA players in his time at the helm of the Spain, Lithuania, and Russia’s national teams. Among those he has coached are the Gasol brothers, Andrei Kirilenko, and Jonas Valančiūnas, and with the European small ball style becoming increasingly prevalent in the NBA, his caoching skill set could be very valuable.
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