Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz named Neven Spahija as its head coach on Monday. He replaces Dusko Ivanovic, who was dismissed earlier in the day. Spahija, 59, returns to the EuroLeague for the first time since 2018 when he coached Maccabi Tel Aviv. Since then, he has served as an assistant coach with Memphis in the NBA and as the head coach for Shanghai Sharks in China. This will be Spahija’s second stint with Baskonia, which he coached in the 2007-08 season. He led the club to the Spanish League championships and the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four.
Spahija started his coaching career in his native Croatia with Elemes Sibenik, Zrinjevac Zagreb, and Gradine Pula. He also coached Olimpija Ljubljana and Krka Novo Mesto of Slovenia, Cibona Zagreb of Croatia, Avtodor Saratov of Russia, Euro Roseto of Italy, Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius of Lithuania, Valencia Basket of Spain, and Fenerbahce Istanbul of Turkey, as well as time as an assistant coach for Atlanta in the NBA. He helped Valencia win the EuroCup in 2010 and reached that competition’s final with Krka in 2003. He has won domestic league titles in Spain (Baskonia 2008), Croatia (Cibona 2000, 2001), Slovenia (Krka 2003), Lithuania (Rytas 2006), Israel (Maccabi 2007, 2018), and Turkey (Fenerbahce 2011). Spahija also won Croatian Cups with Cibona in 2000 and 2001, the Turkish Cup with Fenerbahce in 2011, and the Baltic League with Rytas in 2006. He has coached the Croatian national team, too. Spahija has an 81-79 record in the EuroLeague (50.6%) and is 35-17 in the EuroCup (67.3%).