Last night, under the direction of Israeli-American coach David Blatt, the Cleveland Cavaliers beat out California’s Golden State Warriors in the Game 2 of the NBA Finals. The game went into overtime, ending at 95-93. This is the first Finals win for the Cavaliers in franchise history.
Blatt, who last year led the Israeli team Maccabi Tel Aviv to a Euroleague championship, accepted a head-coaching job with the National Basketball Association’s Cleveland Cavaliers last June.
The 55-year-old Blatt hails from Massachusetts and played at Princeton University under Hall of Fame coach Pete Carill. Other than coaching Maccabi Tel Aviv, Blatt also coached in Greece, Russia, and Turkey over a 20-year career. He coached the Russian national team to the bronze medal at the Summer Olympics in London.
“I’m not leaving Maccabi for a bigger contract. I’m not necessarily leaving for a better place. I’m leaving to follow my dream [to coach in the NBA],” Blatt said last year after announcing his resignation from coaching Maccabi Tel Aviv, reported the Jerusalem Post.
In April, Blatt earned an Eastern Conference Coach of the Month award after achieving a 639 winning percentage over the 2014–15 season– the best of any Cavaliers coach in team history.