(photo credit: FIBA EUROPE Web Site)
After one year in Spain, Lior Eliyahu is back at Maccabi Tel Aviv.
24-year-old forward signed a five-year contract with the yellow-and-blue on
Tuesday, leaving Caja Laboral Vitoria just one season after agreeing to a
Maccabi had been chasing Eliyahu’s signature for several
months, but could only finalize the deal on Tuesday after Vitoria agreed to
Eliyahu, who spent the last month helping the Israel
national team book its place in next summer’s EuroBasket tournament, thanked
Vitoria for allowing him to return home and is looking forward to the coming
“I’m delighted and excited,” said Eliyahu, who averaged 8.4
points and 3.4 rebounds in the Euroleague last season.
“I experienced an
interesting season and won the Spanish championship, but I wanted to return home
to Maccabi. A long-term contract was ideal for both sides and we quickly came to
Eliyahu becomes the seventh player to be signed by new
coach David Blatt.
He follows in the footsteps of Greece big-man Sofoklis
Schortsanitis, Tal Burstein, Richard Hendrix, Jeff Foote, Jeremy Pargo
Elishay Kadir, whose future is now unclear following Eliyahu’s
Maccabi also signed Mikhail Torrance earlier this summer, but
the 21-year-old collapsed during a workout August. 20, only regaining
consciousness last Wednesday.
On Monday, the former Alabama guard walked
without assistance for the first time since his near-fatal heart attack,
will not be playing at Nokia Arena next season.