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Ettore Messina
Ettore Messina 2012.jpg
Ettore Messina
San Antonio Spurs
Position Assistant coach
League NBA
Personal information
Born (1959-09-30) 30 September 1959 (age 58)
Catania, Italy
Nationality Italian
Coaching career 1989–present
Career history
As coach:
1989–1993 Virtus Bologna
1993–1997 Italy
1997–2002 Virtus Bologna
2002–2005 Benetton Treviso
2005–2009 CSKA Moscow
2009–2011 Real Madrid
2011–2012 Los Angeles Lakers (consultant)
2012–2014 CSKA Moscow
2014–present San Antonio Spurs (assistant)
2015–2017 Italy
Career highlights and awards

As head coach:

As assistant coach:

Ettore Messina (born 30 September 1959) is an Italian professional basketball coach who is currently an assistant coach for the San Antonio Spurs of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He has won four EuroLeague championships as a head coach. Messina is regarded as one of the best European basketball coaches of all time, having been named one of the 50 Greatest EuroLeague Contributors in 2008.

He was named the Italian League's Best Coach three times, in the years 1998, 2001, and 2005. Furthermore, he has been named EuroLeague Coach of the Year twice, in 2006 and 2008. He was inducted into the Italian Basketball Hall of Fame in 2008. In 17 seasons, his career head coaching record in the EuroLeague is 279–98 (.740).

Coaching career[edit]

Virtus Bologna[edit]

Messina had two different stints (1989–1993 and 1997–2002) at the Italian League team, Virtus Bologna. In the 1989–90 season, he won the Italian Cup and also the second-tier level European-wide league, the FIBA Cup Winners' Cup, against Real Madrid, in Florence. He also won the Italian League national championship in 1993. During his second stint at Virtus, he coached the team to win the first-tier level European-wide EuroLeague trophies, in both the 1997–98 and 2000–01 seasons. He also added two Italian League championships to his trophy case in 1998 and 2001, as well as three Italian Cup titles in 1999, 2001, and 2002.

Benetton Treviso[edit]

Messina then served as the head coach of the Italian League club Benetton Treviso, where he succeeded Mike D'Antoni as head coach, in 2002. He stayed there for 3 seasons. He won the Italian League championship in 2003, and also the Italian Cup championship thrice, adding them to a total streak of 5 consecutive titles, with two different clubs.

CSKA Moscow[edit]

Messina then joined CSKA Moscow in 2005, and led the team to the EuroLeague 2005–06 season title and the coveted Triple Crown in his first season there. On 4 May 2008, CSKA won the EuroLeague championship again under Messina - the club gained its sixth EuroLeague title by downing Maccabi Tel Aviv at the 2007–08 Madrid EuroLeague Final Four. He resigned from CSKA immediately after leading them to a Russian Championship and the EuroLeague Final, during the 2008–09 season. He was offered a position as the technical director at CSKA, but at the time of his resignation, he had not decided whether or not he wanted to stay with the club.[1]

Real Madrid[edit]

Messina was announced as the new head coach of the Spanish League club Real Madrid on 18 June 2009,[2] and signed his contract the following day. After Real Madrid suffered several poor performances, Messina resigned as their head coach in March 2011.[3]

Los Angeles Lakers[edit]

Messina was frequently the subject of speculation linking him with vacant coaching jobs in the NBA. For example, he was one of the many coaches in the discussion for the Sacramento Kings head coaching role, and it was also rumored that he would join the Toronto Raptors and San Antonio Spurs coaching staffs. Messina eventually agreed to join the Los Angeles Lakers as part of head coach Mike Brown's coaching staff, as a full-time consultant to the head coach, for the 2011-2012 season.[4]

Return to CSKA Moscow[edit]

In June 2012, Messina decided to leave the Los Angeles Lakers as their consultant, and returned to CSKA Moscow, to become the team's head coach.[5] In June 2014, he parted ways with CSKA Moscow.[6]

San Antonio Spurs[edit]

On July 15, 2014, Messina was hired by the San Antonio Spurs as an assistant coach.[7] On October 16, 2014, Messina would coach the Spurs in a pre-season 121–90 win against the Phoenix Suns, due to Gregg Popovich being unable to travel with the team at the time.[8]

Messina would later on take the role of the World Team's head coach in the 2016 NBA Rising Stars Challenge. On March 7 and 8, 2016, Messina would serve again as head coach for the Spurs for two games, due to Gregg Popovich leaving for a family emergency.[9] On April 19, 2018, Messina temporarily took over head coaching duties of the team in their playoff series versus the Golden State Warriors due to Popovich leaving in light of his wife's death the previous night.[10]

Italian national team[edit]

From 1993 to 1997, Messina was the head coach of the senior men's Italian national basketball team. He coached Italy at the EuroBasket 1993, the EuroBasket 1995, and he also led Italy to the silver medal at the EuroBasket 1997.

In 2016, Messina took a short leave of absence from the San Antonio Spurs, in order to return as the head coach of the Azzurri, with the goal of qualifying for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Messina coached Italy at the 2016 Turin FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, but they failed to qualify to the 2016 Olympics, after losing to Croatia.

Coaching record[edit]

G Games coached W Games won L Games lost W–L % Win-loss %

Note: The EuroLeague is not the only competition in which the team played during the season. He also coached in domestic competition, and regional competition if applicable.

Team Year G W L W–L% Result
Virtus Bologna 1991–92 19 13 6 .684 Lost in Quarterfinal Playoffs
1992–93 16 8 8 .500 Lost in Quarterfinal Playoffs
1997–98 22 19 3 .864 Won EuroLeague Championship
1998–99 23 15 8 .652 Lost in EuroLeague Finals
2000–01 23 20 3 .870 Won EuroLeague Championship
2001–02 22 17 5 .773 Lost in EuroLeague Finals
Treviso 2002–03 22 18 4 .818 Lost in EuroLeague Finals
2003–04 20 14 6 .700 Eliminated at Top 16 Stage
2004–05 22 12 10 .545 Lost in Quarterfinal Playoffs
CSKA Moscow
2005–06 24 19 5 .792 Won EuroLeague Championship
2006–07 25 22 3 .880 Lost in EuroLeague Finals
2007–08 25 20 5 .800 Won Euroleague Championship
2008–09 21 16 5 .762 Lost in EuroLeague Finals
Real Madrid 2009–10 20 12 8 .600 Lost in Quarterfinal Playoffs
2010–11 16 11 5 .688 (resigned)
CSKA Moscow 2012–13 26 21 5 .808 Lost in EuroLeague Semifinals
2013–14 31 22 9 .710 Lost in EuroLeague Semifinals
Career 377 279 98 .740

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Messina era ends, Pashutin hired at CSKA!". 2009-06-08. Retrieved 2009-06-09. 
  2. ^ "Real Madrid: Messina takes over as head coach". 2009-06-18. Retrieved 2009-06-19. 
  3. ^ "Ettore Messina officially leaves Real Madrid". March 4, 2011. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  4. ^ " Lakers: Messina to Consult Brown". Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved June 5, 2011. .
  5. ^ McMenamin, Dave. "Ettore Messina joins CSKA Moscow". ESPN. Retrieved 23 August 2012. 
  6. ^ "CSKA Moscow, Messina part ways". June 16, 2014. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Spurs Announce Ettore Messina Assistant Coach". July 15, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  8. ^ "Ettore Messina will serve as acting coach for the Spurs in Phoenix". October 16, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  10. ^

External links[edit]


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