By Johnny Askounis/ email@example.com
Bitci Baskonia and Neven Spahija officially parted ways on Thursday, as announced by the team. Joan Penarroya will take over the head coaching responsibilities at the team based in Vitoria-Gasteiz, as reported by Eurohoops.
Spahija, 59, was named head coach in November following the dismissal of Dusko Ivanovic. Under his guidance, Baskonia drew up a 27-26 record across all competitions, as noted in the press release.
His side finished narrowly short of a berth in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Playoffs ranking ninth behind a 12-16 W-L tally. As for Liga Endesa, it went from the sixth place in the Regular Season to a 2-1 win in the Quarterfinals best-of-three series opposite Valencia but was swept by Real Madrid, 3-0, in the Semifinals.
A couple of days after the last game of the 2021-22 season, Baskonia confirmed the departure of Spahija. He thanked the club for providing ‘the opportunity to return as a head coach in the EuroLeague and Liga Endesa’.
“It has been an honor to guide this team again and I will always be very grateful he added,” painting the picture of his second stint at the team, “Now that we are separating, I want to wish for future success for the entire Baskonia family.”
As the Tau Ceramica boss, the first stint dates back to the 2007-08 season. Further head coaching experience includes Maccabi Tel Aviv, Fenerbahce Ulker, Valencia, Lietuvos Rytas, Krka, and Cibona. Working in the NBA, he landed assistant coaching gigs joining the Atlanta Hawks and Memphis Grizzlies.
Photo Credit: EuroleagueBasketball.net