18 January 1928|
Kronstadt, Soviet Union
|Died||16 August 2005
|Nationality||Soviet / Russian|
|NBA draft||1950 / Undrafted|
|1949–1952||Spartak Leningrad (women)|
|1956–1959||Soviet Union (assistant)|
|Basketball Hall of Fame as coach|
|FIBA Hall of Fame as player|
Gomelsky began his coaching career in 1948, in Leningrad, with LGS Spartak. In 1953, he became the coach of ASK Riga, an army club, leading the team to five Soviet Union League titles, and three consecutive European Champions Cups (Euroleague), from 1958 to 1960.
In 1969, he was appointed the head coach of CSKA Moscow, where he coached until 1980, leading the club to 9 Soviet Union national league championships (1970–1974, 1976–1979), 2 Soviet Union Cups (1972–1973), and one European Champions Cup (Euroleague) title in 1971. He also led the club to two more European Champions Cup (Euroleague) finals, in 1970, and 1973.
Soviet Union national team
Gomelsky coached the Soviet Union national team for almost 30 years, leading them to 6 FIBA European Championship titles (1963, 1965, 1967, 1969, 1979, and 1981), 2 FIBA World Cup titles (1967, and 1982), and the Summer Olympic Games gold medal in 1988.
He was the Soviet national team head coach in 1972, and was expected to coach the team at the 1972 Summer Olympic games, but the KGB confiscated his passport, fearing that, since Gomelsky was Jewish, that he would defect to Israel. The Soviet team, with Vladimir Kondrashin as their coach, won their first Olympic gold medal that year, in a controversial game against the United States national basketball team.
Post coaching career
In his later years, Gomelsky was the president of CSKA Moscow. In 1995, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In 2007, he was enshrined into the FIBA Hall of Fame. The Euroleague's annual Alexander Gomelsky Euroleague Coach of the Year award is named after him, and so is Alexander Gomelsky Universal Sports Hall CSKA. In 2008, he was named one of the 50 Greatest Euroleague Contributors.
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