Anadolu Efes reunites with Ataman
Anadolu Efes has signed a contract with coach Ergin Ataman until the end of next season, after Croatian coach Velimir Perasovic parted ways with the Istanbul club on Dec. 16.
“We wish great success to Ataman,” Anadolu Efes said in a written statement on Dec. 18, recalling that Ataman had led the team between 1999 and 2001 and for a second term between 2008 and 2010.
The statement highlighted Ataman’s storied career, which includes three domestic titles, five Presidential Cup titles, four Turkey Cup titles, a third spot in the EuroLeague and a EuroCup title.
He has coached in 197 EuroLeague games and is set to make a new start with the club in its Round 13 road game at the Khimki Moscow Region on Dec. 20.
For the past five years Ataman has coached Galatasaray Odeabank Istanbul, which he led to the historic 2016 EuroCup crown as well as the Turkish League title in 2013.
He resigned from Galatasaray at the start of this season after he had left the Turkish national team, which he was coaching alongside the club, in 2016.
Anadolu Efes announced early on Dec. 16 that it had parted ways with Perasovic following a dramatic 81-82 home loss against Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz late on Dec. 15 in the EuroLeague.
The outcome dropped Efes to a 3-9 record, with the team now sharing last place in the EuroLeague standings after 12 of 30 rounds in the regular season.
This was the second stint for Perasovic with Efes after he coached the team during the 2010-11 season. Last season he guided the team to the playoffs, where Anadolu was ousted by the eventual EuroLeague runner-up Olympiacos Piraeus in a dramatic five-game series.