One of the most successful coaches in Italian basketball history will take his talents elsewhere in the Turkish Airlines Euroleague next season after Simone Pianigiani announced Tuesday that he is leaving Montepaschi Siena after six seasons as head coach. Pianigiani, 43, spent 10 years as an assistant coach for the club, from 1996 to 2006, before leading Montepaschi to a golden age never seen before in Italian basketball. On Sunday, Montepaschi won its sixth consecutive Italian League title under Pianigiani, a first in the 63--year history of the competition. Pianigiani also won 4 Italian Cup titles and lifted 5 Italian Supercup trophies with Montepaschi. In his six seasons as head coach, Pianigiani led Montepaschi to a 225-28 Italian League record, winning 90.1% of their games and doing even better (59-6, 90.8%) in the playoffs. He also guided Montepaschi to the Euroleague Final Four in 2008 and 2011 as well as two playoffs appearances, in 2009 and 2012. Pianigiani also coaches the Italian national team. Pianigiani said at a press conference on Tuesday in Siena that he is set to join another Turkish Airlines Euroleague club, which will announce his signing shortly.
"Today is my last day as head coach in Siena. I want to thank Ferdinando Minucci and all my staff," Pianigiani said. "We talked months ago and already decided about my departure. As soon as the season ended, I confirmed my decision to him and we agreed to part ways. I think this is the best decision for Siena, that is starting a new project with a new coach".