Turkish Airlines Euroleague
December 07, 2013
Benetton Treviso: a History
by: Frankie Sachs, Eurocupbasketball.com
February 18, 2011
There is a rich history to Treviso Basketball, with the Benetten Bwin Basket’s roots reaching all the way back to 1954. However that history can essentially be split into pre- and post-1982. The club’s first three decades were largely forgettable. Though it did advance to the top league in Italy by 1961, that lasted only one season and financial problems doomed the club in seasons to come. By the late 1970s, Treviso was back on the right track and moving up the ladder. It landed in the top league for a second time in 1981, this time more stable and organized.
The next year, the Benetton family took ownership of the club and the rest is history. Soon the team moved into the Palaverde as its home floor and continued to grow in professionalism as a franchise consistently on the rise. By the end of the 1980s, Benetton Basket was among Italian basketball’s elite teams. But it would only get better. The arrival of Toni Kukoc in 1991 sparked a new era for Benetton, with the team regularly competing for titles and signing some of the best and most famous players in Europe.
In his first season, Kukoc teamed with Vinny Del Negro and Stefano Rusconi to lead the team to its first Italian League title. The next season, with Terry Teagle taking over for Del Negro, Benetton reached the Euroleague final. From that point on, practically every season dad major highlights, with many young coaches putting time in at Benetton on their way to the top and players of the highest quality clamoring to play for them.
The 1994-95 season saw Mike D'Antoni on the bench leading a team with Orlando Woolridge and Petar Naumoski to the Saporta Cup title. Benetton won its second Italian league title in 1997. Zeljko Obradovic took the coaching reins that and brought the team back to the Euroleague Final Four in his first season. He reloaded the team for his second season with the likes of future team legends Riccardo Pittis, Denis Marconato and Marcelo Nicola as well as Zeljko Rebraca and Henry Williams and together they marched to Benetton’s second Saporta Cup crown.
Piero Bucchi became head coach in 1999, brought in Tyus Edney and with him the team won the Italian Cup. D'Antoni came back for the 2001-02 season, brought back Edney and added Charlie Bell midseason to a core that included Pittis, Marconato, Nicola, Jorge Garbajosa and Massimo Bulleri. That team won the Italian Supercup, the Italian league and reached the Final Four.
D'Anton left, but was replaced by another coaching giant, Ettore Messina. Trajan Langdon joins the ranks and Benetton actually improves on its spectacular season the year before, winning the Italian Supercup, League and Cup treble and advancing to the Euroleague title game in Barcelona, where it came up short against the host city’s club. Messina clocked two more seasons in Treviso and lifted two more Italian Cups while helping rebuild the franchise with several new faces.
David Blatt became head coach in 2005 and inherited a team with Matteo Soragna and Ramunas Siskauskas and young talent s Andrea Bargnani and Uros Slokar. He added Nikos Zisis and Marcus Goree. That team won Benetton’s fifth Italian League title, but missed the Euroleague Quarterfinal Playoffs by points differential. In 2007, Benetton lifted its eighth Italian Cup title and was one win away from reaching the Euroleague playoffs in a strange season marked by off-court decisions that caused the team to miss the Italian playoffs for the first time since 1990.
Benetton has played the Eurocup every year since the 2007-08 season, reaching the Final Eight in 2009, though eventual champion Lietuvos Rytas stood in its way in the quarterfinals. Last season, Benetton reached the Eurocup Last 16 and the Italian League playoffs. Head Coach Jasmin Repesa captains the Benetton ship today, fielding a roster that mixes experience – Bulleri is wearing the Benetton colors for the ninth season; youth – big man Donatas Motiejunas and point guard Stefan Markovic are definite rising stars; and stars in their prime – Devin Smith and Sandro Nicevic are current and former All-Eurocup selections… All the ingredients needed to make another run at glory for this storied basketball club.
EUROCUP FINALS SCHEDULE
SEMIFINALS - SATURDAY, APRIL 16, 2011
Unics 87-66 Cedevita Zagreb
Benetton Bwin 63-75 Cajasol
3RD PLACE - SUNDAY, APRIL 17, 2011
Benetton Bwin 57-59 Cedevita Zagreb
FINAL - SUNDAY, APRIL 17, 2011
Unics 92-77 Cajasol
EUROCUP FINALS TEAMS
Final: Unics vs. Cajasol
Semifinal: Benetton Bwin vs. Cajasol
Semifinal: Unics vs. Cedevita
Team arrivals in Treviso
UNICS CELEBRATION VIDEO
MVP, Marko Popovic, Unics
Kelly McCarty, Unics
Terrell Lyday, Unics
Mindaugas Katelynas, Cajasol Sevilla
Tariq Kirksay, Cajasol Sevilla
Marko Popovic, Unics
Kelly McCarty, Unics