Report: Spurs to add Ettore Messina to coaching staff

Fresh off winning their fifth NBA championship, the San Antonio Spurs can now rest and get ready to defend their title next season. According to reports, the silver and black may be adding another piece to the puzzle by adding a top European coach to the ranks.

As we previously reported, the Spurs are planning to add former CSKA Moscow head coach Ettore Messina to their staff as an assistant coach for the 2014-15 season. This was first reported by Daniele Labanti of Corriere di Bologna and later confirmed by Sportando.

Last week, Spurs general manager R.C. Buford denied reports that the Spurs were planning to add Messina to Gregg Popovich’s coaching staff.

“Is someone leaving our staff that I don’t know about?” Buford said. “We have not had one conversation with anyone about a coaching position for next season.”

Today, Sportando tweeted that the Spurs are still looking to add the Italian coach to the staff and said the deal may be done after next week’s NBA Draft.

Spurs guard Manu Ginobili also played for Messina in Europe on the Italian club Virtus Bologna and Messina also served as the head coach of men’s Italian National Team for four years.

By NBA rules, a team is not limited to only three assistant coaches. The rule states only three assistants can sit next to the head coach during games.

If the Spurs have their way, they may add another international name to an already long list in San Antonio.

Be sure to follow your Project Spurs staff on Twitter, including myself @andersonstevem for all the offseason coverage on your 2014 NBA Champion San Antonio Spurs.

About Stephen Anderson

Stephen serves as an editor or writer at several Project Spurs Network sites, including Project Spurs, Stars Hoops, Rampage Central and Red Black 90. He is studying at the University of the Incarnate Word and brings his unique writing style from Minute By Minute Sports. He also is a staff writer for UK entertainment website Reality Box. Be sure to follow him on Twitter (@imsteveanderson) for all the latest news on San Antonio area sports.