David Blatt steps down as Russia national team coach

Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

David Blatt, who led Russia to a title at the 2007 Eurobasket and a bronze this summer at the Olympics, will step down from his position as head coach of the national team.

After coaching the Russian national basketball team to a bronze medal in the London 2012 Olympics, David Blatt will step down from his position as head coach, as reported by Jeff Taylor.

Blatt is one of the most respected coaches in international basketball. The 53-year-old Boston native has guided Russia to international basketball success after a relatively poor spell for a team that used to finish 1-2 with the United States Olympiad after Olympiad.

After taking over the job, Blatt led Russia to the 2007 Eurobasket championship, beating tournament hosts Spain in the championship, 60-59, just a year after the Spaniards won the FIBA World Championship. Russia had been coming off back-to-back eighth place finishes in the European tournament. They finished in third in 2011, and took third at the Olympics this summer in London after beating Argentina in the bronze medal match.

Blatt, who played point guard for Princeton in college, will continue to be head coach of Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel, where he holds dual citizenship. It's unclear why Blatt is stepping down for Russia or who will replace him.

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