Ettore Messina

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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 56)
Catania, Italy
Nationality Italian
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–present Italy
Career highlights and awards

As 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, having been named in 2008 one of the 50 Greatest Euroleague Contributors.

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.

Coaching career[edit]

Virtus Bologna[edit]

Messina had two different stints (1989–1993 and 1997–2002) at the Italian League team, Virtus Bologna. In 1989-1990 season he won the Italian Cup and the FIBA Cup Winners' Cup against Real Madrid in Florence final and the national championship in 1993. During his second stint at Virtus, he coached the team to 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]

He then served as the head coach of the Italian League club Benetton Treviso, where he succeeded Mike D'Antoni as head coach in 2002, and 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 SuperLeague title 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]

He 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. Finally, Messina agreed to join the Los Angeles Lakers as part of head coach Mike Brown's coaching staff, to serve as a consultant to the head coach, in a full-time position.[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 work as 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 to be their assistant coach.[7] On October 16, 2014, Messina would coach the Spurs in a pre-season 121-90 loss with the Phoenix Suns due to Gregg Popovich deciding not to travel with the team at the time.[8]

Italian National Team[edit]

From 1993 to 1997, Messina was the head coach of the senior men's Italian national basketball team. He 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 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.


  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 at the Wayback Machine (archived June 7, 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. 

External links[edit]