According to reports on both sides of the Atlantic, CSKA Moscow CEO Andrei Vatutin is the Russian Mikhail Prokhorov wants in the Nets' front office...in a yet undefined role. Prokhorov said last month he wants "a young, talented Russian manager with a successful background in European basketball" but didn't provide a name.
Vatutin is reportedly that manager. In fact, the 36-year-old had to deny he'd received an offer from the Nets...so far. On Sunday, after CSKA finished third in the Euroleague Final Four, Vatutin didn't sound like a man excited about sticking around. Asked what will happen to CSKA next season, Vatutin wouldn't commit.
"It depends on the owners," he said referring to the group that replaced Prokhorov, cut team expenditures by 30% and dumped Ettore Messina as coach. "Everybody is used to CSKA going to the Finals every year, and now that's not what happened, so many people believe that's a failure. Everything is actually the opposite. It's a success! If in pre-season you said that CSKA will take third place in Europe, would you be upset?" Vatutin admitted CSKA needs to be "updated", rebuilt. Three starters are over 30 and its best player, Viktor Khryapa, may return to the NBA. Doesn't sound like Vatutin wants to be part of that rebuilding.
- Andrew Vatutin Interview (Russian) - Yevgeny Dzichkovsky - Sport Express